ISLAMABAD: The Senate Standing Committee on Finance, Revenue and Economic Affairs observed on Friday that the government has collected Rs7 billion additional taxes imposed as customs duty on mobile phones for overseas Pakistanis in the period of six months.
The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) Member Customs Policy while briefing the Senate committee said that other relevant government institutions noted that the duty imposed on imported mobile phones had a positive impact on foreign investment and local digital industry.
In 2017-18, Pakistan’s legal import value of mobile phones reached $847.656 million in 2017-18. Earlier when there was no duty under a free trade agreement with China, or a very negligible duty applicable from other countries, the imports had crossed the $1 billion mark.
The government recently revised the duty structure and imposed regulatory duty on import of mobile phones, which resulted in a drop in the legal import with a subsequent rise in their smuggling.
Earlier in May 2018, the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority had launched the Device Identification, Registration and Blocking System mechanism to counter rampant smuggling of substandard and used phones into the country.