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Copyright Amendment Bill (No. 2) 1997

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1997

 

 

 

 

 

the parliament of the commonwealth

of australia

 

 

 

 

house of representatives

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

copyright amendment bill (N o .2) 1997

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

explanatory memorandum

 

 

 

(Circulated by authority of the Attorney-General,

the Honourable Daryl Williams AM QC MP)

 

 

 

11055 Cat. No. 97 1653 X ISBN 0644 366702



Copyright right amendment bill (N o. 2) 1997

outline

This Bill gives effect to the decision of the Government, announced in October 1997, to allow importation of legitimate copies of sound recordings without the licence of the copyright owners, and to reform the copyright piracy penalties by making them uniform for all categories of copyright materials and increasing the maximum penalties.

FINANCIAL impact statement

The amendments will have no direct financial impact.

REGULATION IMPACT ON BUSINESS

High impact.

·                Increased competition between local and overseas suppliers of sound recordings.

·                Larger number of titles and suppliers available to local retailers.

·                Lower wholesale prices for sound recordings.

·                Retailers will be more able to compete with sales of sound recordings over the Internet.

·                No increase in compliance costs.

 



COPYRIGHT AMENDMENT BILL (NO.2) 1997

 

REGULATORY IMPACT STATEMENT - OPTIONS TO LOWER THE SOUND RECORDING PRICES FOR CONSUMERS

 

Problem

 

What is the problem being addressed?

 

Sound recording prices in Australia are high by world standards.  Restrictions on the parallel importation of legitimate sound recordings prevent Australian retailers from being able to source lower priced recording from overseas sources without first gaining permission from local rights holders (usually major international record companies).

 

Why is Government action needed to correct the problem?

 

The Commonwealth Government administers the Copyright Act 1968 .  The Government’s arts policy expressed concern at the high cost of sound recordings and noted the previous Government’s failure to act on the recommendations of the 1990 Prices Surveillance Authority report, Inquiry into the Prices of Sound Recordings.

 

Objectives

 

What are the objectives of the Government Action?

 

To provide lower prices for sound recordings to consumers by amending the Copyright Act to permit parallel importation.  Amendment of the Copyright Act would also include increased penalties for the importation, manufacture, sale or trade in all pirated intellectual property products.

 

Is there a regulation/policy currently in place?  Who administers it?

 

The Copyright Act 1968 includes provisions that allow copyright owners to restrict the parallel importation of sound recordings.  The Act is administered by the Attorney-General’s Department.  Copyright-owner-initiated border interception of infringing sound recording imports is undertaken by the Australian Customs Service.

 

Options

 

Which regulatory and non-regulatory options (including quasi-regulation) for dealing with the problem are being considered?

 

Amendment of the Copyright Act would permit the parallel importation of sound recordings.  This would encourage greater competition between local and overseas industry which is expected to lead to lower prices for compact discs.  An increase in and simplification of penalties under the Copyright Act is proposed so as to discourage the importation, manufacture, sale or trade in all pirated intellectual property products.

 

A voluntary price capping agreement between the Government and the music industry has also been canvassed.  However, this is not recommended as it offers very little prospect for real reductions in sound recordings prices.

 

Identify broad constraints which may make some options not viable.

 

The sound recording industry, through its peak body the Australian Record Industry Association (ARIA), and the Australian Music Retailers Association (AMRA) have suggested that sales tax levied on sound recordings contributes to the high price of these products.  Reducing sales tax was not considered to be a viable option due to the impact this would have on Commonwealth revenue and the fact that an earlier reduction in sales tax on sound recordings was not reflected in lower prices to consumers.

 

Impact analysis (costs and benefits) of each option

 

Who is affected by the problem and who is likely to be affected by the proposed solutions?

 

1.    Australian consumers have been forced to pay high prices for sound recordings compared to consumers in the US, Canada, New Zealand and Singapore.

2.    Restrictions on parallel importation have prevented specialist retailers from obtaining sound recordings in a timely and cost efficient manner.

3.    Purchase of sound recordings over the Internet allows consumers to obtain products without paying sales tax.

4.    Parallel importation will expose the sound recording industry to greater competition from overseas suppliers.

5.    Retailers will be able to obtain sound recordings from a wider range of wholesale suppliers than presently.

6.    Local manufacturers may have reduced profits if record companies choose to source product from cheaper suppliers overseas.

7.    Consumers will have access to a greater range of sound recordings at lower prices than presently.

8.    Income of sound recording companies and composers may be adversely affected if consumers choose to purchase imported versions of recordings rather than local releases.

 

How will each proposed option affect existing regulations and the roles of existing regulatory authorities?

 

The recommended option removes the ability of local rights holders to control importation of licensed foreign pressings.

 

The Australian Customs Service will need to distinguish between legitimate imported sound recordings and pirated product in responding to copyright owners’ notices of objection.

 

However, amendment of the Copyright Act to permit parallel importation of legitimate sound recordings will enable the Australian Customs Service (ACS) to concentrate on detection of pirated products rather than being required to detect all imports not sanctioned by the local rights holders.  The ACS has indicated this would not require additional resources.

 

The local music industry claims removing parallel import restrictions will prevent any attempt to implement codes of conduct regulating the sale or local release of undesirable recordings.  Customs advises sufficient controls under Commonwealth and State legislation already exist to control the importation and distribution of objectionable material.

 

The option for a voluntary price capping arrangement would require that the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) devote considerable resources to monitoring sound recording prices.

 

Identify and categorise the expected impacts of the proposed options as likely benefits or likely costs.

 

Benefits of proposed parallel importation regime (Option One)

 

1.    A reduction estimated to be between $1.60 and $3 (Bureau of Transport and Communications Economics (BTCE)) or $3 to $10 (ACCC) in the retail price of a full priced compact disc. These figures represent a reduction of 5-10 per cent in the retail price of a $30 compact disc (Full priced CDs manufactured by some companies in Australia have recently increased to $31 per copy).  Treasury states the potential reductions achievable through parallel importation must be considered against the current headline Consumer Price Index and underlying inflation of 1.3 and 2 per cent respectively.

2.    Increased availability of sound recording titles to Australian consumers.  Major record companies operating in Australia are subsidiaries of global corporations that control about 70 per cent of the global music industry yet typically release as little as 20 per cent of their titles locally.  Parallel importation would allow retailers to access all titles without the need to obtain permission from local rights holders (typically record companies).

3.    Increased and simplified penalties for the importation, manufacture or sale of or trade in all pirated intellectual property products.

4.    Less regulation of legitimate trade in sound recordings.

5.    Increased sales tax revenue through expected sales and reduced incentive for consumers to purchase product from suppliers overseas through the Internet (sales tax not currently able to be collected).

 

Benefits of Voluntary Price Capping (Option Two)

 

1.    Will not threaten the profits of sound recording manufacturers or disrupt current industry practices nor attract possible trade concerns from US, and from UK, and some other members of the EU.

 

Likely costs of parallel importation regime

 

1.    None are expected for Government.

2.    Profits available to major sound record (also largely subsidiaries of global companies which operate in Australia).

3.    Potential for the US, UK and some other EU members to take retaliatory trade action due to perception that intellectual property protection is being weakened.  This would be an extreme reaction given the strength of intellectual property laws in Australia and increased penalties for piracy in the proposed amendment.

 

Determine which groups are likely to experience these benefits and costs and what the extent of their impacts are likely to be.  Quantify these effects where possible.

 

Benefits of parallel importation

 

1.    Consumers will pay lower prices for sound recordings and have greater choice of material (reduction estimated to be between $1.60 and $10).

2.    Retail sales are more competitive with Internet purchases (on which sales tax is not paid).

3.    Retailers will have choice of suppliers due to competition between local and overseas manufacturers and wholesalers.

4.    Simplified and increased penalties for sound recording piracy and all intellectual property piracy.  A single global penalty is proposed with fines of up to $55 000 for individuals and up to $275 000 for corporations.  This global maximum penalty would replace the present graduated penalty system that is complex  and inconsistent with Commonwealth criminal law policy.

 

Potential costs associated with parallel importation

 

1.    Composers may receive lower rates of remuneration from sales of imported sound recordings from the US due to Australian mechanical royalty rates being higher than in the US (which has the lowest worldwide).  Mechanical royalty rates in European countries are similar to those in Australia so artists would not lose income from sales of their recordings manufactured in Europe.

2.    Compact disc manufacturers may face increased competition from overseas sources due to music companies importing overseas pressings.  Current technological advances including the likely supply of music through the Internet is likely to reduce demand for compact disc technology as a platform for sound recordings within five years.

 



Identify distributional effects and attribute these to the groups affected.

 

STAKEHOLDER

DISTRIBUTIONAL EFFECT

1.    Consumers

+ Lower retail prices (estimate in range of $1.60-$10)

+ Improved access to wider range of titles (only 20 per cent of titles currently released by companies).

2.    Independent Retailers

+ Lower wholesale prices due to competition between local and overseas suppliers.

+ Easier access to titles released overseas.

+ Choice of suppliers

3.    Australian Music Retailers Association

+ Lower wholesale prices.

+ Easier access to titles released overseas,

+ Choice of suppliers.

4.    Major Retailers

+ Lower wholesale prices,

+ Easier access to titles released overseas,

+ Choice of suppliers.

5.    Music Artists

? Sales may generate increased overall income from royalties.

? Investment in artist development by major companies may change.

? Composers may receive less mechanical royalties from parallel imports.

6.    Music Companies

- Profits may decline

- Increased competition from suppliers overseas

7.    Compact Disc Manufacturers

- Imported copies of sound recording may be substituted for locally manufactured compact discs if these are not price competitive with imports.

8.    Commonwealth Government

+ Increased revenue from sales tax if sales increase.

+ Less purchasing from Internet will minimise loss of sales tax revenue.

+ Less regulation of legitimate trade.

+ Simplification of penalties for intellectual property piracy.

+ Alignment of penalties with Commonwealth criminal law provisions.

- Strong reaction from US, UK and some EU members

 

Identify the data sources and assumptions used in making these assessments

 

Prices Surveillance Authority (1990) report Inquiry into the Prices of Sound Recordings

Treasury Analysis - International comparison of compact disc prices

Bureau of Transport and Communications Economics - Parallel import restrictions on sound recordings likely consequences of their removal in Australia.

Submissions from relevant interests received by the Interdepartmental Committee investigating sound recording prices.

 

Summarise outcomes for each option examined and state why a particular option in preferred.

 

Option 1 (Parallel Importation of Sound Recordings)

 

·       Most likely to achieve lower prices for sound recordings.

·       Lower retail prices for sound recordings for Australian consumers estimated to be in the range of $1.60 to $3 (The ACCC estimates possible falls of up to $10) in the price of a compact disc currently selling for $30.

·       Australian retailers will be able to benefit from competition between local and overseas suppliers in providing better range of product at lower wholesale prices.

·       Lower retail prices will encourage purchases which will increase sales tax revenue and minimise consumers’ purchases over the Internet.

 

Option 2 (Voluntary price cap arrangement with industry)

 

·       Will not reduce price of compact discs below current levels.

·       Will not antagonise sections of the Australian music sector affected by option one.

 

Consultation

 

Who are the main affected parties?

 

·       Australian consumers

·       Independent retailers

·       Australian Music Retailers Association (AMRA)

·       Large retailers

·       Australian Recording Industry Association (ARIA)

·       Music artists

 

What are the views of those parties?

 

Consumers

 

The Australian Consumers Association (ACA) has indicated that sound recordings in Australia are higher than in a number of comparable countries including the US.  The ACA has campaigned for lower prices for many years.

 

Independent retailers

 

Support introduction of parallel importation of sound recordings.

 

Australian Music Retailers Association (AMRA)

 

Oppose parallel importation of sound recordings.

 

 

Large Retailers

 

Oppose parallel importation of sound recordings.

 

Australian Recording Industry Association (ARIA)

 

Oppose parallel importation of sound recordings.

 

Music Artists

 

Opinion varies.  Some oppose parallel importation due to fears that royalties will decrease due to sales in Australia of US versions of their recordings. The US has the lowest rate of royalty payment internationally.

 



Where consultation was limited or not undertaken, why was full consultation inappropriate?

 

Submissions were obtained from a wide variety of stakeholders.  Wider consultation was not pursued as public submissions were obtained by the 1990 Prices Surveillance Authority inquiry.  Views of groups were largely predictable prior to consultation and had been canvassed several times over the life of the sound recording prices issue.

 

Conclusion and recommended option

 

Provide a brief summary of the assessment of each option

 

Option One offers the prospect of lower prices in the short term at no cost to public revenue, easier consumer access to a greater range of sound recordings, and increased competition.  While offering prospects for lower priced sound recordings it may cause some disruption to the sound recording industry and attract unfavourable reactions from the US, UK and some other members of the EU.

 

Option Two offers little prospect of further price reductions and will not facilitate ready access to a wider range of sound recordings.  This option will not antagonise elements of the sound recording industry in Australia, sections of the music retail sector or significant trade partners.  However, it is likely to generate substantial criticism from consumer groups and most media outlets and commentators.

 

What is the preferred option?

 

Option One (introduction of parallel importation with appropriate safeguards) is the simplest and most effective means to achieve lower prices for consumers.  This approach is consistent with the Government’s stated policy on this issue and its micro-economic reform agenda.  It does not appear logical or justifiable to quarantine the sound recording industry from local and overseas competition.

 



Briefly outline the main assumptions that the conclusion rests upon.

 

Parallel importation will increase competition between local and overseas suppliers of sound recordings in the Australian market.  Sound recordings in a number of countries, particularly the US, are cheaper than in Australia and it is expected that local retailers will be able to source significant product from these sources at cheaper rates than are locally available.  This should encourage local suppliers to make sound recording titles available to retailers at similar wholesale prices to those which could be obtained from overseas suppliers.  Further local subsidiaries of global music companies, which control 70 per cent of the world industry typically only release 20 per cent of their titles in the Australian market.  Parallel importation will mean that Australian consumers have a greater range of choice.

 

Why is this option preferred and others rejected?

 

Analysis of this issue over many years has shown that the only effective mechanism, with real potential to lower the retail prices of sound recordings, is amendment of the Copyright Act to allow parallel importation.

 

Implementation and Review

 

How will the preferred option be implemented?

 

Through amendment of the Copyright Act to allow parallel importation.

 

Is the preferred option clear, consistent, comprehensible and accessible to users?

 

Amendment of the Copyright Act will remove restrictions on the commercial importation of legitimate copies of sound recordings.  This will simplify and remove impediments to the commercial importation of copies of sound recordings by wholesalers and retailers.

 



What is the impact on business, including small business, and how will compliance and paper burden costs be minimised?

 

The proposed parallel importation regime removes restrictions on the trade in legitimate copies of sound recordings.  Parallel importation will allow retailers to choose product from local or overseas suppliers without having to gain permission of recording companies.  Removal of parallel importation restrictions may place greater burdens on record companies in initiating action against pirated material.

 

How will the effectiveness of the preferred option be assessed?  How frequently?

 

The Government decision included a requirement for review of the changes to the Copyright Act within 3 years.

 

If the preferred option takes the form of regulation, is there a built-in provision to review or revoke the Act after it has been in place for a certain length of time?

 

The effectiveness of amendments to the Copyright Act will be reviewed within three years after assent to the legislation.

 



Contents

Paragraphs

                   Short title                                                                                                    1

                   Commencement                                                                                          2

                   Schedules                                                                                                   3

Schedule 1 -      Parallel importation of records                                               4-15

Schedule 2 -      Amendment of the Copyright Act 1968                                     15-24

relating to amendment of penalties



notes on clauses

 

Clause 1 - Short title

1.      When enacted this Bill will be cited as the Copyright Amendment Act (No.2) 1997 .

Clause 2 - Commencement

2.      The clause provides that the Act will come into operation on the day of Royal Assent.

Clause 3 - Schedules

3.      By virtue this clause the provisions of the Copyright Act 1968 (hereinafter called the Act) are amended or repealed as set out in the particular schedules.



Schedule 1 - parallel importation of records

Background

4.      Schedule 1 amends provisions in Parts III and IV of the Act to allow importation into Australia of copies of published sound recordings without the licence of the makers of the recordings and the composers of the works recorded, if the copies were made without infringement of copyright in the country of manufacture.  Where there is no copyright protection of sound recordings in the country of manufacture, the copies can be imported without the Australian copyright owner’s consent only if their manufacture was undertaken or approved by the maker or other copyright owner of the sound recording in the country where the original recording was made.  The amendments also allow trading and other commercial dealing with copies that have been imported in accordance with the provisions just referred to.

5.      Schedule 1 also amends Part V of the Act dealing with remedies for copyright infringement.  A new section is inserted to provide that, in proceedings for infringement consisting of unlicensed importation of unauthorised, ie, pirate, copies of sound recordings and commercial dealing with such copies, once the plaintiff has established that the copy was imported without the consent of the relevant copyright owner, the defendant will then have the onus of establishing that the copies are legitimate and not pirate copies.

Item 1 - Subsection 10(1)(at the end of the definition of infringing copy )

6.      Item 1 amends the existing definition of “infringing copy” by adding reference to a non-infringing copy of a sound recording.  The intention is to exclude non-infringing copies of sound recordings, which are defined in item 3, from the scope of the definition of infringing copy.

Item 2 - Subsection 10(1)

7.      Item 2 inserts in subsection 10(1) a new definition of “non-infringing copy of a sound recording”.

 

8.      Under the new definition the copies must have been made without infringing copyright or related right in the sound recording or any copyright in the works recorded.  A copy made in a country that does not protect sound recordings by copyright or a related right comes within the definition if it was made by or with the consent of the owner of the copyright or related right in the sound recording in the country where the original recording was made or, in the absence of a copyright or related right owner of the original recording, the maker of the sound recording.

 

Item 3 - At the end of Division 3 of Part III

 

9.      Item 3 inserts new s.44D which provides that the copyright in a work recorded in a sound recording is not infringed by the importation of a non-infringing copy of the recording.  New s.44D also excludes from infringement of copyright acts of commercial dealing in Australia with an imported non-infringing copy.  New s.44D(2) provides that the section applies only if the sound recording was published in Australia or in another country before the date of importation of the copy into Australia.  If the sound recording was published in another country, it must have been so published with the consent of the owner of the copyright or related right in the sound recording or, if the country does not have a law for copyright or a related right, then it must have been published with the consent of the maker of the sound recording. New s.44D(3) clarifies that the relevant owner of the copyright or related right in the sound recording for the purposes of s.44D(2) is the owner at the time the publication occurred.  New s.44D thus allows importation of “legitimate” copies of published sound recordings without the licence of the Australian owners of copyright in the music, words and other works recorded in the recording.

 

Item 4 - Subsections 102(1) and 103(1)

 

10.    Item 4 makes a consequential drafting amendment resulting from the amendments made by item 5.

 

Item 5 - At the end Division 6 of Part IV

 

11.    Item 5 inserts new s.112D which provides that the copyright in a sound recording is not infringed by the importation of a non-infringing copy of the recording, as defined in the new definition of “non-infringing copy” inserted by item 2 of the Schedule.  New s.112D also excludes from infringement of copyright acts of commercial dealing in Australia with an imported non-infringing copy.  New s.112D(2) provides that the section applies only if the sound recording was published in Australia or another country before the date of importation of the copy into Australia.   If the sound recording was published in another country, it must have been so published with the consent of the owner of the copyright or related right in the sound recording or, if the country does not have a law for copyright or a related right, then it must have been published with the consent of the maker of the sound recording.  New s.112D(3) clarifies that the relevant owner of the copyright or related right in the sound recording for the purposes of s.112D(2) is the owner at the time the publication occurred.  New s.112D thus allows importation of “legitimate” copies of sound recordings without the licence of the Australian owners of copyright in the recording.

 

Item 6 - After section 130

 

12.    Item 6 inserts new s.130A to provide that in an action under s.37 or 102 for infringement of copyright in a sound recording or the works recorded in the recording by importation of a copy of the recording for commercial purposes, once the plaintiff has proved the elements of the action referred to in those sections - including the importation for commercial purposes and the absence of a licence to import from the copyright owner - it will lie upon the defendant to establish that the copy in question was a non-infringing copy that was able to be imported for commercial purposes without the licence of the copyright owners.  In the case of an action under s.38 or 103 for commercial distribution, without the licence of the copyright owners, of a copy of a sound recording imported without their licence, once the plaintiff has established the elements of the infringement - including the act of commercial distribution, the fact that the copy was imported and the absence of a licence from the copyright owner - it will lie on the defendant to prove that the copy was a non-infringing copy that was able to be imported for commercial purposes without the licence of the copyright owners.

 

Item 7 - Subsection 135(10)

 

13.    Item 7 makes a consequential drafting amendment resulting from insertion in the Act of new ss.44D and 112D by items 3 and 5 respectively.

 

Item 8 - Application

 

14.    Item 8 provides that the amendments made by Schedule 1 will apply to copies of sound recordings imported into Australia after the commencement of the Act.



SCHEDULE 2 - AMENDMENT OF PENALTIES

 

Background

 

15.    In response to industry concerns about piracy and for a consistent approach to penalties, Schedule 2 makes amendments to the Act to simplify and increase the penalties for infringement of copyright for all offences under ss.132, 133A, 248P, 248Q and 248QA an .

 

16.    Under ss.133 and 248R, available penalties for offences under ss.132, 248P, 248Q and 248QA vary according to the particular offence, whether the offence is the first or a subsequent one, and whether the offence is prosecuted before the Federal Court or any other court.   Penalties under s.133A also vary according to whether the offence is a first or subsequent one.  The amendments simplify the Act, so that offences under ss.132, 248P, 248Q and 248QA will be subject to the same maximum penalties, and so that offences under s.133A will be subject to one maximum penalty.  These amendments will allow the courts discretion to apply the appropriate penalty having regard to the circumstances of the particular case, and as such are consistent with current Commonwealth criminal law policy.

 

17.    The amendments also provide for increases in existing maximum penalties.  The new maximum monetary penalties will be $55,000 for individuals and, by the operation of subsection 4B(3) of the Crimes Act 1914 , $275,000 for corporations for all offences under ss.132, 248P, 248Q and 248QA.  In accordance with Commonwealth criminal law policy, those penalties are expressed in the amendments in penalty units (s.4AA(1) of the Crimes Act 1914 provides that one penalty unit is equivalent to $110).  In s.133A the maximum penalty will be increased to 15 penalty units ($1,650) and/or 6 months imprisonment for individuals or 150 penalty units ($16,500) for corporations.

 

Item 1 - After subsection 132(6)

 

18.    Item 1 inserts a new s.132(6A) in s.132 to provide for a single penalty for all offences under s.132 to simplify and provide for consistent copyright criminal infringement penalties.  New s.132(6A) provides that a contravention of s.132(1), (2), (2A), (3), (5) or (5AA) is to be subject to a single penalty of 500 penalty units for individuals and/or 5 years imprisonment.  Item 1 provides for a single penalty in the same terms as items 4, 5 and 6 of this Schedule.

 

Item 2 - Subsections 133(1), (2) and (3)

 

19.    Item 2 provides for the repeal of s.133(1), (2) and (3) as a consequence of replacement of the penalties for which they provide by a simplified penalty in new s.132(6A).

 

Item 3 - Paragraphs 133A(1)(c) and (d)

 

20.    Item 3 provides for an amendment to s.133A(1) so that a single maximum penalty of 15 penalty units and/or 6 months imprisonment for individuals (150 penalty units for corporations) will apply to the offence in that provision of advertising for the supply of infringing copies of computer programs.  This replaces provision for a lower maximum penalty to apply to a first offence.

 

Item 4 - After subsection 248P(7)

 

21.    Item 4 inserts a new s.248P(7A) in s.248P to provide for a single penalty for all offences under s.248P to simplify and provide for consistent penalties for criminal offences relating to bootlegging of performances.  New s.248P(7A) provides that a contravention of s.248P(1), (2), (3), (4), (5) or (6) is to be subject to a single penalty of 500 penalty units for individuals and/or 5 years imprisonment.  Item 4 provides for a single penalty in the same terms as items 1, 5 and 6.

 

Item 5 - At the end of section 248Q

 

22.    Item 5 inserts a new s.248Q(8) in s.248Q to provide for a single penalty for all offences under s.248Q to simplify and provide for consistent penalties for other offences relating to bootlegging of performances.  New s.248Q(8) provides that a contravention of s.248Q(1), (2), (3), (4) or (6) is to be subject to a single penalty of 500 penalty units for individuals and/or 5 years imprisonment.  Item 5 provides for a single penalty in the same terms as items 1, 4 and 6.

 

Item 6 - At the end of section 248QA

 

23.    Item 6 inserts a new s.248QA(6) in s.248QA to provide for a single penalty for all offences under s.248QA to simplify and provide for consistent penalties for offences relating to bootleg sound recordings of performances.  New s.248QA(6) provides that a contravention of s.248QA(2), (3), (4) or (5) is to be subject to a single penalty of 500 penalty units for individuals and/or 5 years imprisonment.  Item 6 provides for a single penalty in the same terms as items 1, 4 and 5.

 

Item 7 - Sections 248QB and 248R

 

24.    Item 7 repeals s.248QB and s.248R and inserts a new and simplified s.248QB as a consequence of the repeal of s.248R.  Section 248R is repealed as a consequence of simplified and uniform penalties inserted into the Act by items 4, 5 and 6.