Due to the implementation of DIRBS, buying used phones is now riskier than ever because of a number of problems that are associated with them. People generally buying used phones at cheaper price tags don’t generally go into the specifics and in particular, if the phone is not registered or has a tampered IMEI, it will get blocked after 2 months of its purchase. Plus used phones don’t come with a warranty so you wouldn’t be able to claim them later on.
Traders and buyers have been informed by Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) that if they have a smuggled phone in possession, they should get it registered as soon as possible to avoid the ban. This was done via awareness campaigns at the start of this year because the smuggled phones business is costing the government a lot of money due to no taxes being paid on them.
Due to the mass blocking of phones, both retailers and buyers are now in fear. Retailers held negotiations with FBR but the talks were inconclusive. Chairman FBR Shabbar Zaidi remarked in a press conference: “If tax on a mobile phone is Rs. 20,000, the traders are demanding we tax [the same device] Rs400, which is not acceptable.” On the sidelines, Government is considering to further reduce taxes to increase the appeal of phones and persuade the mass public to register their phones with the DIRBS.
Traders across the country are now required to produce their CNICs if they purchase or make sales of Rs. 50,000 and above to come under the tax net. The traders have protested against this and have observed a shutter down strike across the country on 13th July.
Are you comfortable purchasing used phones now?