Mobile handset imports close to Rs45b in 2010-11

70% growth registered for fiscal year 2010-11, more than 80% handset imports carried out from China.

M Yasir August 08, 2011
Mobile handset imports close to Rs45b in 2010-11

Handset import bill of different brands, prices and features has been registered at Rs. 44.69 billion in the outgoing financial year (2010-11), up from the Rs 26.44 billion import bill recorded last year, said the latest figures issued from the Federal Bureau of Statistics (FBS).

The FBS report states handset sales and imports surged substantially depicting a 70% growth for fiscal year 2010-11 as compared to the previous year.

The average monthly expense of handsets reached Rs 3.72 billion in FY 11 versus Rs 2.2 billion monthly import bill recorded in FY 10.

Analysts said growth in handset sale and import was natural as local demand had been growing side by side with an increase in the number of SIMs issued by different operators. In addition, high priced smartphones are significantly contributing towards the overall value of the import bill.

(Read: Smartphones: Not so popular in Pakistan)

Customers purchase gadgets with emerging trends, style and technology of the brands. They replace their handsets in one to two years depending on brands – whether Chinese or others.

Demand and sale of handsets is also coupled with snatching/theft cases and gadgets going obsolete.

Market dealers said that sale of handsets has increased by more than one million units per month, which stood almost half in the previous fiscal year. Sales have picked up at an accelerated pace with increasing demand in the local markets, particularly in the rural areas in addition to sales growth in urban areas.

More than 80% of handset imports are carried out from China, including Chinese brands and renowned brands. However, Chinese-made handsets gained a major share in the local markets owing to lower prices amid multiple features.

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Haroon Rashid | 12 years ago | Reply

While endorsing the comments from Mr. Fahim which are valid. A few things I would like to add the International Telecommunication Union, Geneva has standardised mobile phone charger/adapter. Pakistan with the level of skill, engineering and otherwise to produce low cost charger for mobile phone handset which will be of one common pin on all mobile phone which will appear shortly with all the handsets. Pakistan can save foreign exchange by putting a total ban on the import of chargers, Chargers be produced locally and exported. Will give some relief. Secondly with the ARM, UK Pakistan should start making Tablet PC's on Android platform for educational sector, for instrumentation, for car dash board control, for diagnostics, for instrumentation. This is the only segment which may have some relief. ARM is partner to Nokia, Apple for the complete hardware. POssibly some policy maker may have sympathy to read and act on this.

fahim | 12 years ago | Reply

@Ammar: Thats not going to happen. Most of the major mobile companies like Nokia, Siemens, Philips, LG, Samsung, have moved their low cost and partial mid segment manufacturing base to India and have invested billions of dollars to set up factories for domestic as well as export to South Asia, South East Asia and Africa. Nokia Chennai itself exports to more than 50 countries (check their website). And dont forget China which dominates the high end and partial mid level manufacturing segment. India currently imports $ 70 billion worth electronics components annually to assist local manufacture companies and it is expected to grow $400 billion by 2020 as their economy shoots up. Also it seems India is setting up number of silicon fabrication labs for $ 10 billion to locally produce commercial microchips in next few years. Already most of their critical defense, space, and nuclear programs runs on secured 100% Indian made microprocessors. We have lost the race for low cost manufacturing long back by spending money on junk chinese military toys.

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