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Samsung ‘Considering’ Setting Up Smartphone Assembly Plant in Pakistan

by Newsweek Pakistan

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Industries minister Hammad Azhar says South Korean firm has appreciated government’s policies to encourage local production

South Korean smartphone manufacturer Samsung is “actively” considering establishing an assembly plant in Pakistan, Industries and Productions Minister Hammad Azhar announced on Friday.

“Smartphone production in Pakistan is multiplying following DIRBS [Device Identification, Registration and Blocking System] implementation and Mobile Policy launched recently,” he posted on Twitter. “Met with the Samsung Pakistan managing director and chief executive officer,” he said, adding they had both appreciated the government’s policies. “They … are now actively considering setting up a smartphone assembly plan in Pakistan,” he added.

The federal cabinet earlier this year approved a Mobile Device Manufacturing Policy to promote indigenous production of smartphones through local and foreign direct investment and joint ventures. The policy claims to reduce mobile prices and increase exports.

According to daily Dawn, around 14 smartphone companies are producing handsets in Pakistan right now, but most are still developing 2G devices. The manufacturing policy is aimed at directly incentivizing the production of smartphones with 3G, 4G and eventual 5G technologies.

The DIRBS policy, meanwhile, seeks to discourage the smuggling of smartphones by requiring all smartphone users to register their devices with the government or risk their phones being blocked.

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