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Foreign exchange regime further liberalised for info-tech payments

KARACHI (July 08 2004): The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has further liberalised foreign exchange regime, and allowed authorised dealers to release foreign exchange up $100,000 for payment for the information technology (IT).

The SBP issued a circular in this connection on Wednesday as follows:

“Authorised dealers are hereby granted general permission to release foreign exchange up to a maximum of US $100,000 or equivalent in other currencies per invoice for private sector companies incorporated in Pakistan, for payments on account of utilisation of Information Technology services.”

The payment should be made after satisfying themselves with the genuineness and bona fides of the requests through invoices, government approvals/ NOCs/licensing or certifications wherever so required as per the instructions in the Foreign Exchange Manual, and after deducting all applicable taxes.

A list of eligible items under this circular is as follows:

Satellite Transponder charges, International Bandwidth charges, International Internet service charges, International Private Line charges, Software licence/maintenance and support fees for proprietary/specialised software, subscriptions/payments for access to foreign electronic media and databases.

The following categories shall, however, continue to be governed under the existing instructions:

Remittances by branches/liaison/project offices of foreign company (other than branches of foreign banks) and remittances by State bodies and enterprises.

Remittances under authority of this circular may only be made through a bank designated by the remitters for the purpose under intimation to Exchange Policy Department, State Bank of Pakistan. “The above changes will take effect immediately,” said the circular.

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