ISLAMABAD: In a watershed development and to address the repeated concerns raised by Overseas Pakistanis (including those working abroad or Pakistani students studying overseas) and foreign nationals visiting Pakistan on short term visits regarding blocking of their mobile devices via DIRBS, Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) and Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) have jointly developed a new system for their temporary registration in collaboration with Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) and Mobile Phone Operators.
This module has been introduced for those overseas Pakistanis and foreign nationals who do not intend to keep their mobile device in Pakistan and will be applicable for only one (1) mobile handset device.
To avail this facility, the applicant shall provide his/her credentials including passport No., date of arrival and intended date of departure, mobile SIM issued in his/her name, and IMEI(s) of the device. The new system shall carry out real time validation from FIA IBMS to verify the date of arrival of the applicant.
On lapse of 120 days of the stay of the applicant, the IMEI(s) utilized under this facilitation shall be suspended and will not be utilized on local network services. In case, same applicant visits Pakistan again, he/she will be required to re-apply for this temporary facilitation, by re-entering the credentials which were used for the 1st or previous registration under this scheme.
This system will not only facilitate overseas Pakistanis and foreign nationals coming to Pakistan on short term basis but will also create a positive image of the country. Likewise, the checks introduced under this system will ensure that only the genuine overseas Pakistani/foreign national avails the said facility.
It is pertinent to mention that FBR has already introduced a number of innovative digital interventions to ensure taxpayers facilitation and ease of doing business through technology. In the recent past, the country’s premier revenue collection organisation has collaborated with FIA and NADRA in developing an automated facility for Currency Declaration at ports to fight the menace of money laundering and thereby rule out the possible flight of foreign currency from Pakistan.
Therefore, the above initiative comes as yet another wonderful step taken by FBR to maximize taxpayers’ facilitation, in particular, the Overseas Pakistanis and Foreign Nationals visiting Pakistan for a short period of time.