International iTunes... Soon?

One source indicates that the Canadian launch of the iTunes Music Store is expected on the order of weeks -- with licensing dicussions nearing compleition.

European users also have some encouraging news with this MacWorld UK article which references a Music Week article discussing iTunes and the European market. In the article, Pascal Cagni, vice-president of Apple Europe, reveals that launching the iTunes music store in Europe is his top priority:

    "As head of Europe, I have only one interest, which is to launch [iTunes Music Store] in Europe"

Unfortunately, it appears licensing discussions did not begin until after the US launch, and the service may be launched in a piecemeal fashion -- with more Internet-popular areas getting first access.

As an encouraging sign, however, head of EMI is quoted as saying "I can't see anything that would stop us making music available for Apple's service in Europe".

Reader, jhaeusler, provides more confirmation that the wheels are turning with an article in Musikwoche (German) which indicates that many German independent labels are interested and there is a new coordinator in Apple Europe handling calls for European labels interested in the service.