International Roaming of Afghan SIMs Not Allowed in Pakistan: PTA

International roaming facility for Afghanistan based operators in Pakistan is disabled by default and there’s no roaming service available for any Afghan SIM with-in Pakistan’s borders, said Pakistan Telecommunication Authority.

Mobile phone companies also confirmed ProPakistani that they aren’t offering roaming services to any Afghan operator including Roshan Telecom, Etisalat, MTN Telecom and Afghan Wireless.

Issue was raised when ARY TV showed that Afghan SIMs are being sold in Pakistan in cities including Chaman and that these Afghan SIMs are operating as usual with-in Pakistani borders including Karachi, Lahore and Islamabad.

ARY Claimed that it has proofs of Afghan SIM operating in Pakistan, that’s when PTA came ahead and clarified the situation by refuting the report and claiming that no Afghan SIM can operate in Pakistan.


According to PTA, any Afghan SIM, brought from Afghanistan into Pakistan by any means, will not work/operate inside Pakistan’s territory.

However, the PTA clarified, these Afghan SIMs may work near border areas where there is spillover coverage of Afghan operators with-in Pakistani borders.

Expert say that these spillover GSM signals can not travel beyond an aerial distance of 35 kilometers in ideal conditions and about  8-12 kilometers in usual cases.

Pakistan Telecommunication Authority said that it had approached Afghan Embassy in Islamabad through Foreign Office to resolve this spillover coverage of Afghani operators with-in Pakistani boarder, however, matter hasn’t been resolved yet.

It must be noted that Pakistani operators are allowed to roam in Afghanistan and SIMs of all Pakistani operators, while in roaming, work smoothly in Afghanistan.

Morover any Afghan number (mobile or landline) can make calls from with-in Afghanistan to any Pakistani mobile or landline number just like an international call.

Tech reporter with over 10 years of experience, founder of ProPakistani.PK

  • PTA said that but is there any truth to it?

    • trump

      The whole of Charsadda attack went to hind sight, while SIMs and roaming is on the foreground. It is a matter of common sense that no communication equipment should work within at least 100 km of Pakistani border territory.
      Through CPEC, we should seek to secure our border with Afghanistan.

      • twister286

        Within 100km of border territory? By that metric, Lahore wouldn’t have signals either, as Wagah is around 30-40km from Lahore max.

        Afghan telecom operators need to ensure their signals don’t spill over into our borders, that should be enough.

  • HarrySidd

    Wo jo call krtay rahey wo phir Mr.India e h0ga … haina PTA ??

  • asadkhattak

    PTA is not telling truth. Certain reports appearing in press, claims that Ufone and Zong are offering roaming facility and both celcos are yet to deny. ARY is on record that their man sitting in Caman, called the anchor twicely on camera. How?

    • aamir7

      Chaman Border par maybe service ho Afghan operators ki… not a big deal.

      • asadkhattak

        Accepted, but how on earth they called from BKU Charsadda?

        • Dr. Aamir Liaquat Hussain

          They can’t..charsadda is way inside the border, also the border area near agencies is not ideal for GSM signals.
          these are just blame games…watch afghan or indian media after any attacks..they start blaming this that we recorded calls and they were controlled from neighboring country.
          always check both sides of the coin.

  • HassaanM

    Fence the damn border.

    • Dr. Aamir Liaquat Hussain

      to block signals?

      • HassaanM

        Definitely not. I believe spillover signals are not to blame here. These calls are just cooked up, there is no way that Afghan telecom signals could have reached Charsadda.

        Pakistan should instead work to block the porosity of the border. They can start by building a fence.

        • Dr. Aamir Liaquat Hussain

          Building a fence?
          I don’t know how people suggests these things.
          Fence will cost billions of dollars or maybe whole budget of 2 years.

          • HassaanM

            Think about it. This fence wouldn’t cost more than $6 billion, going by a hefty estimate of $8 million a mile. We can always secure funding from other countries like China / Russia or even USA because the porosity of the Durand Line is a threat to our national integrity, and indirectly to the aforementioned countries.

            And by the way our budget is around $44 billion for FY 2015-16.

            • Dr. Aamir Liaquat Hussain

              Funding for fence not possible and no body give damn.
              I don’t know the cost of fencing but the terrain at many areas is not suitable for any fencing. Also fencing can’t blok anything, you have to light up whole area at night and you need thousands and border security personnel.
              We are already spending too much on defence, can’t afford more. The yearly cost of these things will be morethan 100 billion rs per year.

              • HassaanM


  • Inam

    Someone woke up after getting our children killed.

    • rahim dad

      NOTYET PROPERLY PLEASE because a lot of black sheep already in every department of republic atomic Islamic pakistan

  • Babar Haq

    according to this afghan telco site all 4 telcos can be used on roaming

  • Salman Ansari

    Has someone heard of timing advance in GSM? That’s the way this issue was handled when GSM was launched in Pakistan