Feb 5 (Reuters) - British Columbia, Canada's third-most populous province, said on Monday it would set up a network of government-run stores that could only sell recreational marijuana, and would not allow sales in the same stores as liquor or tobacco.
British Columbia said in December that recreational pot would be sold through a combination of public and private stores, and government online sales, to buyers who are at least 19 years old.
But the province left open the door to allowing non-medical cannabis to be sold inside private and government-run liquor stores.
Some public health experts have argued against selling pot in liquor stores, saying it could introduce a large segment of the population that does not use marijuana to the product.
British Columbia's policies on pot "are driven by our priorities of protecting youth, promoting health and safety, keeping the criminal element out of cannabis and keeping our roads safe," provincial public safety minister Mike Farnworth said in a statement.
British Columbia is the latest of Canada's 10 provinces to unveil frameworks for retail marijuana sale. In Ontario, Quebec and New Brunswick, cannabis sales will be run by provincial government-owned entities. The western provinces of Manitoba and Alberta have said they will license private retailers. (Reporting by Nicole Mordant in Vancouver; Editing by Richard Chang and Alistair Bell)