If you are using an imported mobile phone and haven’t registered it so far, you need not worry as the government has extended the registration date.
The government has extended the deadline by 60 days. You can now get your imported sets registered by March 28.
In October, the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) had said it would block all mobile phones with International Mobile Equipment Identity (IMEI) numbers not registered with it till October 20. The deadline was extended till December 31 after public backlash and later till January 15.
However, the government changed its policy that those with non-duty paid, unregistered mobile phones can now get their devices registered even after January 15, but they will have to pay a fine, which will equal 10% of customs duty.
The PTI government also set a limit on the number of mobile phones to be imported.
The telecommunication authority has installed a new system of registration for imported mobile phones at airports to facilitate the homecoming passengers. They will not have to stand in a queue for this purpose anymore.
Overseas Pakistanis can also file their mobile phone file taxes online.
An IMEI number is a unique code given to your mobile by its maker just like the vehicle identification number. The government uses this number to identify a valid phone on a network (Jazz, Telenor or Zong for example) and can block the handset’s access to the network. If the PTA blocks your mobile phone’s IMEI number, you cannot use it on any mobile network in Pakistan—the phone will simply not function.
To find out your phone’s IMEI number, you can dial *#06# from your smartphone or in case of the feature phone just find it printed in the battery compartment. Texting your IMEI number to 8484 will confirm if it is registered.
If you have purchased a branded (packed) phone from the market, it will be duty paid. In that case you don’t have to worry because when you insert your SIM or connect with a network for the first time, your phone is registered automatically.