Google has reportedly stopped allowing carrier-paid app downloads in Pakistan via mobile phone due to unpaid balances that have been held since the central bank disabled the payment system, according to the Ministry of Information Technology & Telecom (MoITT). This decision was made due to the nonpayment of outstanding balances. The MoITT stated that the suspension would be temporary.
Despite Aminul Haque’s repeated promises, the dreaded suspension takes place. The Ministry of Finance had earlier that day approved the release of illegal payments to Google and other foreign service providers on the advice of Haque.
Users can only download paid apps from the Google Play Store with a credit card when it is suspended. The IT ministry officials promised that the problem would be rectified in two weeks.
According to representatives from the Ministry of IT, the federal minister of IT has given the authorities instructions to fix the issue as soon as possible. Beginning on December 1, 2022, the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) might have forbidden inbound mobile users from downloading paid Google Play Store services using their mobile balance as a source of payment if the payment of $34 million to the international service providers hadn’t been suspended.
The SBP stopped using the direct carrier billing (DCB) system, which led to the suspension of a $34 million payment to foreign service providers like Google, Amazon, and Meta. Customers of the DCB online mobile payment system can make purchases by charging them their mobile phone carrier bills.
Customers of telecommunications companies can send money abroad to pay for IT-related services and purchase these items using airtime. However, Tariq Bajwa got in touch with Haque and expressed his thoughts on the payments that had been halted.
The IT Minister later confirmed that the Finance Ministry had agreed to make the payments according to schedule. He promised that “paid Google Play apps will not be suspended in Pakistan” based on the fact that the Finance Ministry had given the SBP instructions to postpone the implementation of the regulation that had suspended payments for one month.
He said that within a month, telecom companies must implement the payment method. The IT ministry wrote to Finance Minister Ishaq Dar asking for a timeline for the aforementioned execution in response to the telecom operators’ request for government assistance, the minister said.