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Local Smartphone Production Soars at 13.1M Units

The way Pakistan interacts with technology has undergone a dramatic shift. Since the COVID-19 pandemic, the demand for mobile phones has skyrocketed, with hundreds of thousands embracing digital solutions and the convenience of smartphones. This surge in demand is being met with a surprising response: a significant rise in local production. 

 

According to Topline Research’s Kumar, local mobile companies manufactured/assembled 2.23 million phone units in May 2024 alone, a 55% year-on-year increase. This brings the total local production for the first five months of 2024 to a remarkable 13.1 million units, marking a 168% jump compared to the same period last year.

 

This remarkable improvement can be attributed to two key factors. Firstly, import restrictions implemented in the previous year aimed to curb foreign exchange outflow. Secondly, Pakistan’s gradual economic recovery has provided fertile ground for domestic production to flourish.

 

The impact of this shift is undeniable. Currently, Pakistan fulfils a whopping 95% of its mobile phone demand through local manufacturing/assembly. This stands in stark contrast to the 5-year (2019-2023) average of 67% and the even lower 8-year (2016-2023) average of 47%.

 

Kumar further highlights a fascinating detail: “All mobile brands except iPhone are now being manufactured/assembled in Pakistan.” This signifies a remarkable transformation within the Pakistani mobile phone ecosystem.

 

This shift towards local production finds its roots in the government’s proactive approach. In 2020, a local mobile manufacturing policy was introduced, specifically designed to attract leading international mobile companies to establish assembly plants within Pakistan.

 

There’s another key advantage to local production: affordability.  Domestically manufactured/assembled mobile phones offer a price advantage of 15-20% compared to imported units of similar build quality. This price difference makes smartphones more accessible to a wider segment of the population, further fueling the digital revolution in Pakistan.

 

The surge in local production not only reduces reliance on imports but also bolsters digital inclusion by making smartphones more affordable. This transformation positions Pakistan to embrace a future powered by readily available mobile technology.

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