The government is thinking to impose regulatory duty on the unregistered mobile phones depending on which category they fall in.
As per the reports of local media, the blocked mobile phones would only be allowed to be unblocked after the regulatory duty is paid besides a penalty at the nearby customs point.
It has been calculated that the imports of the unlawful phones in the country results in causing revenue losses of around $1.5 billion to the public exchequer on a per year basis.
In the financial year 2018 the legal imports of mobile phones clocked at $847.656 million and in the last few years, the legal imports have fallen down from one billion dollar owing to the rise in the custom duty.
It has also been noted that the majority of these refurbished and used cell phones are being smuggled into the country through many channels. These mobile phones would be blocked via the Device Identification, Registration and Blocking System (DIRBS) mechanism.
As per an official source from the 15th of November every consumer would be needed to SMS the International Mobile Equipment Identity (IMEI) number printed on the box of the new handset purchased to 8484.
In response to that, the consumers would then get a reply informing that whether the set is compliant with the DIRBS or not.
If the handset would be non-compliant then a message would be sent to the consumer informing them to pay the customs duty besides penalty within 2 months’ time.
Once, done this would make all the unregistered mobile phones usable.
The sources revealed that the authorities are working on the amount of the regulatory duty for used mobile phones, which would be announced once the federal cabinet gives a green signal.
Currently, revised rates have been announced by the FBR of regulatory duties for importing new mobile handsets and the rate is two hundred and fifty rupees per mobile set having total less than sixty dollars.
Also, the rate of regulatory duty would be charged on the basis of the worth of the mobile phone, if the handset is of an amount between $60-$130 then 10 per cent regulatory duty would be charged.
Furthermore, the sources revealed that the rates of regulatory duty on used mobile phones would be charged taking their value in consideration.