EghtesadOnline: As the new phase of Mobile Registry Scheme goes into effect next week, smuggled Google, BlackBerry and Motorola phones will be disconnected from local operators’ networks.
Aimed at curbing cellphone smuggling, the Telecom Ministry, Islamic Republic of Iran Customs Administration, the Communication Regulatory Authority and the Industries Ministry created the so-called Mobile Registry scheme according to which local operators are barred from offering services to contraband phones.
To prevent a shock to the huge cellphone market, implementation of the scheme has been phased, according to Financial Tribune.
Head of the Tehran Telecom Traders Union Mehdi Mohebi says, “All newly activated Google, BlackBerry and Motorola phones have been screened since Dec. 5, 2017 … smuggled handsets will become defunct as of next week,” the union’s website reported.
On Jan. 4 functioning contraband iPhones were disconnected during the initial phase. Noting that the plan has been successful, he said the stringent rules helped reduce iPhone smuggling to a significant extent.
According to the official, close to 25,000 contraband iPhones have been detected and disconnected so far.
“Some 5,000 handsets belonged to visitors who have left the country. The same number was brought into the country by travelers and was activated after their owners paid the customs duty.”
Incoming passengers have to pay 18% import tax and register their devices with the customs.
“In the next phase, other brands, possibly LG, Huawei and Samsung will be included,” he said, without going into details.
By March all mobile phones entering the country will be subject to the new regulations.