Pakistani Prime Minister introduces an initiative that will enable overseas Pakistanis to get their handsets registered without paying any taxes.
Overseas Pakistanis who are living in the UAE and other countries have been allowed to use their mobile phones upon arrival in their home country for four months without interruption.
This comes as Pakistani Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif launched a temporary registration system for expats on Tuesday.
Previously, there was no fixed duration that overseas Pakistanis could use their handsets upon reaching their home country — but devices often stopped functioning two months after one's arrival in the country due to non-registration with the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA).
“As part of efforts to facilitate our overseas Pakistanis, I launched a temporary registration system that will allow them to use their mobile phones for four months without any interruption. These Pakistanis are great ambassadors of the country who work hard day in and day out and make significant contributions to the motherland,”
said the prime minister.
There are over nine million Pakistanis living and working abroad, mainly in the GCC, Europe, and the US, contributing billions of dollars in remittances to the South Asian economy. Around 1.7 million Pakistanis are living and working in the UAE, the second largest home of the South Asian diaspora after Saudi Arabia.
According to the State Bank of Pakistan’s latest data, overseas Pakistanis remittances fell to $2.2 billion during the month of June from $2.8 billion a year earlier. Remittances also fell to $27 billion for fiscal year 2023, compared with $31.3 billion a year earlier.
Speaking during the launch of the “Online Temporary Mobile Registration System for the Overseas Pakistanis and Foreign Nationals,” Sharif added that this initiative will enable overseas Pakistanis to get their handsets registered during their visit to Pakistan without paying any taxes.
Media reports also said the PTA will facilitate an online registration system and provide links through which Pakistanis living and working abroad, students, and foreign tourists would be able to register their mobile phones.
“It is the government's responsibility to provide ease and facilitation to them when they come home to meet their loved ones,”
News Source: Khaleej Times