Hammad Azhar, Federal Minister for Industries and Development, expressed hope that the top manufacturing companies for smartphones will soon set up their production hubs in Pakistan.
Briefing on the success of his government in promoting the country’s cell phone development, the minister said that when the incumbent government came to power two years ago, it noted that mobile phone and smartphone manufacturing and exports were an important part of emerging economies such as Vietnam.
That was not the case in Pakistan, though, after we researched the market, we discovered that 70% to 80% of cell phones sold in the country were smuggled. In order to counter this, the government introduced DIRBS alongside PTA, which not only eliminated mobile phone smuggling, but also more than doubled the tax revenue raised from mobile phone imports from Rs 20 billion to Rs 55 billion in a year, said the minister.
He said that after the smuggling was stopped and the implementation of the Cell Phone Manufacturing Policy, as companies shift towards local production of mobile phones, they are witnessing that a number of international companies are partnering with local companies to produce smartphones in Pakistan.
The Minister added that the goal of these firms is not only to cater to the local market, but also to export. “I therefore believe that the production of smartphones and mobile phones will become an important part of Pakistan’s economy in the coming years,” Azhar said.
He announced that their capabilities are being developed by a number of major smartphone manufacturing brands. Azhar said Vivo, a leading smartphone maker, has already begun production in Faisalabad.
I believe that others will follow soon as Pakistan offers the best business climate in the country,” he said, “a number of smartphone manufacturing companies are developing their bases in Pakistan.