6.0639 Query: UNESCO accord? (1/34)

Fri, 2 Apr 1993 15:38:45 EST

Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 6, No. 0639. Friday, 2 Apr 1993.

Date: Thu, 1 Apr 93 15:04:48 MST
From: Janis Ernest Svilpis <jsvilpis@acs.ucalgary.ca>
Subject: Query: UNESCO accord on educational materials

The Canadian government has recently imposed customs fees on
packages entering Canada. (This is an effort to prevent
Canadians from benefitting by cross-border shopping in the USA,
which is itself a phenomenon partly created by the Canada-USA
Free Trade Agreement.) These fees are charged on educational
materials--examination copies of textbooks, scholarly books,
educational software, and the like--and there are brokerage fees
(and Goods and Services Tax on the brokerage service) occasioned
by the customs fees. I and my colleagues at the University of
Calgary are upset by this, since it aggravates the problems faced
by Canadian educators and educational institutions in the current
recession. I am trying to put together a substantial letter to
the Canadian government protesting this practice.

One of my colleagues recalls, vaguely, that there is a recent
UNESCO accord on educational materials that adopts the principle
that educational materials are not to be subject to duties,
taxes, or fees when they cross international borders. She
recalls also that Canada is a signatory to this accord. I have
no expertise in this area, so documenting the UNESCO accord is
not easy for me. Can anyone give me further details on this or
on anything else that might be useful?

Please reply to me directly, and thank you for your help.

Janis Svilpis,
Department of English,
University of Calgary,
Calgary, AB T2N 1N4 Canada

phone: (403) 220-6371 or 220-5470
fax: (403) 289-1123
Internet: jsvilpis@acs.ucalgary.ca