Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) issued report related to revenues coming from telecom sector which one of the fast growing industries as more and more people choose for the internet and other digital modes in their daily lives crossed Rs552 billion in financial year 2018-19.
According to the Annual Report 2018-19 telecom sector contributed over Rs96 billion to the national exchequer in terms of taxes, duties and levies, attracted investment of $636 million and its revenues crossed Rs552 billion in the financial year. The sector also attracted $236 million in foreign direct investment (FDI) during the year.
Annual report further presents a comprehensive overview of PTA and telecommunication sector’s performance, the telecom sector continued to grow in terms of subscriptions, teledensity and revenue.
It registered a steady growth in the number of subscribers that reached to 163.5 million by the end of FY19, a year-on-year growth of 7%.
Total teledensity reached 77.7% where main contribution came from mobile phone services. Pakistan has over 44,919 cell sites and subscription and usage of broadband services has grown exponentially. Data usage over broadband networks was 2,545 PB in FY19 compared to 1,207 PB in FY18, a year-on-year growth of 113%.
PTA said it had taken a number of initiatives for promoting latest technologies in a country. The regulator discussed plans for tests and trials of the new generation technology to set the stage for launch of 5G technology which is expected to reshape the technological, social and economic landscape in Pakistan.
PTA said in a report that PTA, as a regulator, kept playing its role prudently by ensuring an open, competitive, fair and well-regulated sector. It has made a meaningful contribution to the national economy by restricting import of mobile devices through grey channels by implementing the Device Identification, Registration and Blocking System (DIRBS).
Resultantly, the import of mobile phones through illegal channels has been minimized and tax revenues of the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) have increased.
Implementation of DIRBS has created incentive for the local assembly/ manufacture of mobile phones. PTA has also been working very closely with the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) for enhancing digital payments.
PTA emphasized that increasing 4G coverage through latest technology, promoting broadband connectivity, availability of additional spectrum to mobile operators, affordable 4G handsets, addressing Right of Way (RoW) issues, expanding fibre connectivity, enhanced quality of service (QoS) parameters, ensuring better coverage and 5G technology testing and preparations would continue to be its priority areas in the current year.