Are really used Computers destroying Pakistan?


One good known reason for Pakistani people of Used items import to Pakistan, is getting used products on low prices ,but it is like dangerous enemy in shape of blessings entering to our Home land and destroying our health , fertility of people and Soil, as well at other side destroying our economy and major barrier in transfer of technology from developed countries to Pakistan .
The harsh effects of e-waste could be on soil through discharge of hazardous contents from landfills; in water due to contamination of rivers, wells and other water sources; in air due to emission of gases and burning of e-waste. It is also the main cause of Skin, Liver , Lungs and other kind of Cancer spreading in Pakistan from young to old workers involve in dismantling the products . Not only this but percolating to soil making it unfertile as well the crops coming out with hazardous effects and cause of Stomach cancer and other serious issues of intestine .
Thousands of tons of e-waste is sent to Pakistan each year from countries such as the US and the UK, with even more expected to arrive due to China and India recently strengthening laws regarding the importation of e-waste from other countries.
The import of used and obsolete computers into Pakistan has had the following negative impact:
Lack of growth of the Pakistani Hardware Industry
Potential Loss of tax revenue for the country
Negative environmental impact and lack of safeguards for consumers and high electricity usage.
It is interesting that Total Laptop’s Import to Pakistan in 2018 were 472,746 Units with assessed total value 52 Million USD , Total Desktop’s Import were 1.3 Million Units with assessed total value of 88 Million USD and total 70,000 Servers import to Pakistan had assessed value of 71 Million USD . But unfortunately among the above mentioned only 88375(18% of TOTAL Laptop Import) Units of laptop , 67517 Desktop( only 5% of Total Desktop Import) and 59592 Servers were New , and Imported through Official partners of IT vendors, and rest all were declared as used and refurbished .
In 2019 Total Laptop Import to PAKISTAN were 393955 units with assessed total value of 43 Million , total Desktop import was 1.09 Million Units with assessed value of 73 Million USD , YOY declining in total Import of Personal computers were 19% and 11% respectively in Laptop and Desktops . But again among these Units of 2019 only 73646 Laptop (18.3% of total Laptop Import) had assessed value of 22 Million and 56264 Desktop ( 5% of total Desktop Import) had Assessed value of 20 Million USD belongs to New Systems Import .
Very dangerous situation is that, these Used system not only making serious harm to Pakistan economy, and barrier for investment of Foreign IT companies and transferring latest technology to Pakistan,but also serious revenue loss to Pakistan Customs and FBR as most of Used Desktops and Laptops declared at the value of between 20 USD to 60 USD ,which sold in Open market between 35,000 to 50,000 Rs.
A person using an old computer is wasting/consuming significantly more energy than the new energy efficient personal computers. Negligence of governmental bodies and legislative organizations has led to a situation in which Pakistan has no inventory on the domestic generation of e-waste nor the illegal import of 2nd hand computers or e-waste.
Pakistan environmental protection act (PEPA) came into force in December, 1997. Section 11 of this act prohibits discharge or emission of any hazardous chemical in the environment and Section 13 strictly prohibits the importation of any hazardous substance in the territory of Pakistan (PEPA, 1997). Import Policy order 2007-08 restricts the import of any material that is mentioned in the Basel Convention.
The government of Pakistan first needs to enforce the rules that already exist, such as the Basel Convention, which restricts the import and transboundary movement of hazardous substances, becomes more effective.
Based on above presented facts afflicting the IT industry, we suggest that the Government restricts the import on PC’s which are more than 1 year old. This will ensure that we:
Kick-start investment in the Pakistan’s IT Hardware Industry.
Earn potential tax revenue for the Government of Pakistan. Safeguard interests of the consumer.
Reduce negative impact on our environment and efficient use of electricity.

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