North American smart card imports top 31 million

North American smart card imports top 31 million

Chip card shipments to the US and Canada from January through June 2002 were 31.2 million, more than double the same period last year, according to research from the Smart Card Alliance.

The bi-annual study, conducted by accounting and tax firm KPMG, shows that 31.2 million smart cards were exported January through to June 2002, an 111% increase on the 14.77 million shipments from the same period in 2001.

The study also shows that of the total, exports of microprocessor cards accounted for 24.95 million in 2002, up 87% from 13.31 million a year earlier. Memory card shipments in 2002 jumped to 6.24 million compared to 1.46 million in the same period last year, more than a threefold increase.

Randy Vanderhoof, president and CEO of the Smart Card Alliance, says the change is due to the volume being more evenly spread across several sectors including, financial, retail, pay TV and government: "This is very positive because it makes the industry less dependent on telecom, although that sector remains among the largest."

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