PTA’s New Regulations Will Help Localize The Smartphone Industry in Pakistan

Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) has released new draft regulations this week that require all phone companies to obtain a special 10-year license before they can operate in the country. This license will help Pakistan build a localized Smartphone industry.


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As part of this license, phone companies can start assembling handset components within the country, but they will be required to use more Pakistani materials for assembly over time. At first, the companies will only be required to use packing materials that are made in Pakistan, only 2% in the beginning.

The next year, they will be required to assemble 10% of their batteries and motherboards using Pakistani materials and 8% of their displays and plastic housings as well.

Additionally, this license requires the companies to teach local operators how to build their own Smartphones after three years of operation. This will include teaching them about chipset design and the manufacturing of motherboards, displays, phone accessories, etc.

The telecom regulator has said that it aims to promote local manufacturing and assembly in Pakistan and discourage smartphone smuggling. It was estimated that nearly 40 to 60% of smartphones in Pakistan are smuggled.

Pakistan will no doubt be facing tough competition from manufacturing giants such as China and Vietnam but hopes to attract major companies with low tax rates. No major companies have expressed intentions to build factories in Pakistan so far, but Samsung may be looking to open an assembly plant soon.


  • For phone making you need low cost of electricity, transport and technical staff which is not present at all in Pakistan. I think this policy will harm Pakistanis more as people will not produce anything in Pakistan and only favorites will open assembling plants like what happened in car industry, a cartel of assemblers will import parts and send back profits in dollars and the end sufferer will be Pakistani consumer.

  • For phone making you need low cost of electricity, transport and technical staff which is not present at all in Pakistan. I think this policy will harm Pakistanis more as companies will not produce anything in Pakistan and only favorites will open assembling plants like what happened in car industry, a mafia of assemblers import parts and materials and send back profits in dollars to home countries, and the end sufferer will be Pakistani consumer.

  • PTA’s Press Release is encouraging/progressive, as it has brought Pakistan to one of the best country on Tele-density chart. First phase to consider by the PTA which important/essential up-gradation of the PTA announcement at this year GSR by ITU, Geneva due to Covid 19, the event was Online was DIGITIZATION worldwide. Is Pakistan Digitised with the telecom sector to comply to ITU standards? Pakistan has all the capability, the people, the technology, and Pakistan. PTA is the flag of Pakistan at Full mast.

    • Yea right… Thats why a smartphone that costs only PKR 63,000 in India is sold for PKR 90,000 in Pakistan (ref: OnePlus Nord). Same is the case with most of the other IOT products which are a must to achieve digitization. PTA has since been looting the people of Pakistan and not supporting digitization in the pace that is required to catch up with the world (especially India)…


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