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Canadian Retailers Rejoice Over microSD Exemption

The Retail Council of Canada applauded the Canadian government for exempting microSD flash memory cards from the private audio copying levy.

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Unedited press release follows:

Retail Council of Canada applauds Copyright Act exemption on memory cards

OTTAWA, Nov. 7, 2012 – Retail Council of Canada (RCC) commends the federal government for following through on its commitment to exempt microSD cards — very small, removable memory cards used in countless electronic devices¬† — from the Copyright Act.

On July 3rd, 2012, Industry Minister Christian Paradis announced the government’s intent to put in place regulations exempting microSD memory cards from copyright levies.

“In only four short months, Minister Paradis has delivered on his promise to put a stop to the imposition of what would have amounted to a new and illogical “tax” on a wide range of electronic equipment,” said Diane J. Brisebois, President and CEO, RCC. “Imagine buying a digital camera only to discover that you are paying an extra hidden “tax” targeted at devices that download and play music. This is what the government has very wisely avoided.”

In 2011, the Canadian Private Copying Collective asked the Copyright Board to impose a tariff in the form of a “levy” on electronic memory cards. The intention was to collect levies on “the sale of blank audio recording media.” However, microSD cards are overwhelmingly used in countless other devices that have nothing to do with music, such as digital cameras, video recorders, GPS devices and industrial barcode scanners.

“We thank the federal government for acting so quickly to protect Canadians from an unreasonable tariff imposed on these cards” said Brisebois. “This action, which is consistent with the government’s approach to the digital economy, will save Canadians money and protect consumers from paying a ridiculous tax.”

Retail Council of Canada ( is the Voice of Retail. Founded in 1963, RCC is a not-for-profit association which represents more than 45,000 stores of all retail formats, including department, grocery, independent merchants, regional and national specialty chains, and online merchants.