When will 5G services be launched in Pakistan? Minister unveils date

ISLAMABAD: The caretaker Federal Minister for Information Technology and Telecommunication Dr. Umar Saif has revealed that Pakistan is on track to launch 5G services by July-August 2024. This announcement was made during the Pakistan Mobile Summit, the country’s first-ever mobile conference, where Dr. Saif outlined the government’s ambitious plan for the future of telecommunications in Pakistan.
Addressing the summit, Dr. Umar Saif emphasized the importance of enhancing the optic fiber network to support the rollout of 5G services. Currently, only 6,000 mobile towers in Pakistan are equipped with optic fiber cables out of approximately 56,000 towers nationwide. To address this, the government plans to offer a 300MHz spectrum for auction, paving the way for the deployment of advanced telecommunications infrastructure across the country.
In a move aimed at promoting the local mobile industry, the federal government has decided to grant a three percent Research and Development (R&D) allowance to mobile manufacturers, starting from the next fiscal year. Dr. Saif announced that this allowance will be increased to eight percent in the coming years, demonstrating the government’s commitment to fostering innovation and supporting local businesses.
Highlighting the significant progress made in the local mobile manufacturing sector, Dr. Umar Saif shared that Pakistan has assembled approximately 9 million mobile phones worth around $1.5 billion in the last two years. Moreover, the country has exported nearly 250,000 mobile phones, earning around $200 million in foreign exchange. Dr. Saif also underscored the government’s efforts to prepare components locally, with the ultimate goal of manufacturing fully assembled phones within Pakistan.
Pakistan’s IT and Telecommunication minister emphasized the country’s potential as the 7th largest market of cellular users globally, with 191 million cellular connections. He stressed the need to transition from importing mobile phones to manufacturing them locally, thus developing an industry capable of exporting “made-in-Pakistan” phones.
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Dr. Umar Saif concluded by highlighting the pivotal role of the Pakistani government in supporting the growth of the mobile manufacturing industry through various incentives. The announcement of Pakistan’s imminent entry into the 5G era, coupled with initiatives to promote local manufacturing and innovation, signifies a promising future for the country’s telecommunications sector.