As the prices of mobile phones are going up due to increased luxury tax and rupee depreciation, the government has decided to allow the used mobile phones import in the country in order to provide a cheap alternative.
Reportedly, a revised policy will be tabled tomorrow in the Federal Cabinet meeting with the focus to trim down the import bill as smartphones hold a major chunk of Pakistan’s imported items.
To tackle the expected loss of the dealers and citizens who are in possession of smuggled phones in the country, the government is thinking on the lines of providing an amnesty scheme to legalize such smartphones before implementing Device Identification, Registration and Blocking System (DIRBS). Note here that earlier Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) has decided to block smuggled and illegal smartphones in the country but later on extended the deadline for an unannounced time period.
According to the media reports, 20% to 25% fine could be charged under the proposed amnesty scheme with the option to regularize the illegal smartphones on a one-time basis. However, the smartphones activated after October 20th, 2018 and before November 30th, 2018 will be able to take benefit from the scheme.
Although it is evident that the government wants to enhance the national exchequer by enforcing the new policy, we don’t want this policy to meet the same feat of permitting the dealers to import scrapped and old laptops.
If Pakistan wants to increase the IT exports and move along the world in technological advancements. We should never allow the country to be the dump site of outdated and useless smartphones.