Compiled by: Mirza Rohail B
Pakistan is on the verge of Telecom revolution. Pakistan Telecommunications Authority (PTA) in 2004 introduced two types of license for ISPs – regional and nationwide, and also exempted them from Central Excise Duty. Since liberalization, over the past four years, the Pakistani telecom sector has attracted more than $9 billion in foreign investments. During 2007-08, the Pakistani Communication sector alone received $ 1.62 billion in Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) – about 30% of the country’s total foreign direct investment.
By March 2009, Pakistan had 91 million mobile subscribers – 25 million more subscribers than reported in the same period 2008. In addition to 3.1 million fixed lines, while as many as 2.4 million are using Wireless Local Loop connections.
Pakistan is ranked 4th in terms of broadband Internet growth in the world, as the subscriber base of broadband Internet has been increasing rapidly with the total base crossing 170,000 in the country. The rankings are released by Point Topic Global broadband analysis, a global research centre.
Pakistan according to PC World was amongst those top five countries with the highest SMS traffic processed with 763 million SMS during 2008-09. In terms of year-on-year growth, Pakistan traffic volume grew by 253 percent compared to last year during the same period.
The contribution of telecom sector to the national exchequer increased to Rs 110 billion in the year 2007-08 on account of general sales tax, activation charges and other steps as compared to Rs 100 billion in the year 2006-07.