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Google Play Store services to be unavailable in Pakistan from Dec 1

ISLAMABAD: Mobile users will not be able to download Google Play Store from Dec 1, 2022, as the State Bank of Pakistan suspended the payment of $34 million to international service providers.

The payment to international service providers including Google, Amazon and Meta delayed as the central bank suspended direct carrier billing (DCB) mechanism.

The mobile companies pay $34 million to the service providers annually but they could not do so due to the central bank’s decision of suspending DCB.

The customers now will be able to download Google and other international apps for making payments through credit cards or debit cards only.

The credit card facility, however, is limited to a certain number of customers, so the majority of mobile users may be deprived of downloading apps from Google Play Store.

The Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunication, Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) and four cellular mobile operators (CMOs) unanimously wrote a joint letter to the SBP on Friday, and made a request to reverse its decision of revoking the DCB mechanism for payment of Dollar fee by viewing the liquidity crunch being faced by the country.

The latest reports say that Google services such as downloading apps woukd be unavailable till the outstanding amount is paid.

The four mobile operators moved a joint letter to the government, pleasing that the telecom industry is one of the biggest contributors to foreign direct investment along with other significant contributions in the form of tax, duties and other levies.

The role of the telecom sector in expanding the agenda of Digital Pakistan cannot be ignored.

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