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ISLAMABAD: The Device Identification Registration and Blocking System (DIRBS) registered all GSMA-valid mobile devices after payment of Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) duties/taxes and accordingly allowed approved devices to work on all Pakistani mobile networks.

So far, the government of Pakistan has collected Rs63 billion in the form of taxes and duties for handset registration in the individual category only.

In addition, DIRBS also identifies and blocks any IMEI of a mobile device that is cloned, duplicate, or non-tax paid on a routine basis.

Blocking mobile SIMs: explore alternative strategies to enhance tax collection, GSMA urges FBR

In March 2024, 1,934, devices were identified by the system as non-tax paid.

In order to avoid inconvenience, multiple alert messages were sent to the users to submit proof of payment against PSID (FBR-issued tax invoices) through PTA’s Complaint Management System.

However, those IMEIs whose proof of payment against the PSID was not received by PTA were blocked by the system on the 4th of May 2024. Thereafter, 248 mobile devices out of 1,934 blocked devices have been unblocked after payment of applicable duties/taxes to the FBR.

The subject issue highlighted in the media is false and misleading as the national exchequer has not experienced any loss of revenue.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2024

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