Committee on Issues of Cellular Mobile Operators (CICMO) directed the National database Registration Authority (NADRA) to decrease charges of biometric verification of SIM keeping in view of the current situation regarding COVID-19 outbreak.
CICMO was formed in line with directions of Prime Minister Imran Khan to overcomes the issues of cellular mobile operators and suggest recommendations for onward submission to the Prime Minister’s Office, including settlement of license renewal matters with cellular mobile operators that would help the government in valuable income generation in the current crisis situation.
The first meeting of the committee was chaired by Secretary Information Technology (IT) Shoaib Ahmad Siddiqui. He issued directives to the NADRA for submitting its report in this regard next week. The Ministry of Industries and Production official agreed to the proposal that the telecom sector should be given a functional industry status.
The NADRA representative wanted to discuss the matter with its chairman and board. The chair
The meeting also discussed matters related to additional spectrum allocation in Pakistan and AJK & GB, jointly agreed license renewal frameworks, tax rationalization and Right of Way (RoW).
The telecom operators showed keen interest in additional spectrum auction in Pakistan and AJK & GB to facilitate quality mobile broadband services necessary assist people especially students and professional to work from home during COVID-19.
Shoaib Ahmad Siddiqui emphasized the need for urgent availability of required spectrum in Pakistan and AJK & GB. The Ministry of Kashmir Affairs and Gilgit Baltistan has already ready to take lead on the matter for their respective areas in line with applicable laws.
It was decided in a meeting to prepare proposals for withdrawal of withholding tax for 90 days as a relief for cellular consumers during the current situation, in addition to the tax harmonization between the Federation and the provinces regarding FED/GST.
The Chair directed PTA and telecom industry to work together in writing proposals regarding data pricing to avoid abuse of service.
The meeting was attended by senior officers of the Ministry of IT, Cabinet Division, Ministry Finance, Ministry of Industries & Production, Federal Board of Revenue , representatives from PTA, NADRA and Cellular Mobile Operators.