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.
A version of this post appeared on ProPakistani.pk