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Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited
Private, Public
Traded as KSEPTC
Industry Telecommunications
Genre Telecommunication
Founded August 14, 1947 (1947-08-14)[citation needed]
Headquarters Islamabad, Islamabad Capital Venue, Pakistan
Key people
Dr. Daniel Ritz
(President, CEO)
Azamat Ali Ranjha
Muhammad Nehmatullah Toor
Tariq Salman
(CTO)[citation needed]
Products Wireless
Revenue Decrease75.75 billion (US$720 million) - 2015[1]
Increase8.76 billion (US$84 million) - 2015[1]
Owner Pakistan government (62%)
Etisalat Telecommunications (26%)
Subsidiaries Ufone GSM

Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL) is the leading telecommunication company in Pakistan. The company provides telephonic and Internet services nationwide and is the backbone for the country's telecommunication infrastructure despite the arrival of a dozen other telecommunication corporations, including Telenor Corps and China Mobile Ltd. The corporation manages and operates around 2000 telephone exchanges across the country, providing the largest fixed-line network. Data and backbone services such as GSM, HSPA+, CDMA, LTE, broadband Internet, IPTV, and wholesale are an increasing part of its business.

Originally one of the state-owned corporations (SOEs), the share holding of PTCL was reduced to ≈62%, when 26% of shares and control was sold to Etisalat Telecommunications and the remaining 12% to the general public in 2006 under an intensified privatization programme of prime minister Shaukat Aziz. However, the 62% of shares still remain under the management of government-ownership of state-owned corporations (SOEs) of Pakistan.


From the beginning of the Posts & Telegraph Department in 1947 and establishment of Pakistan Telephone & Telegraph Department in 1962, PTCL has been a major player in telecommunication in Pakistan.

Pakistan Telecommunication Corporation (PTC) took over operations and functions from Pakistan Telephone and Telegraph Department under Pakistan Telecommunication Corporation Act 1991. This coincided with the Government's competitive policy, encouraging private sector participation and resulting in award of licenses for cellular, card-operated pay-phones, paging and, lately, data communication services.

Pursuing a progressive policy, the Government in 1991, announced its plans to privatize PTCL, and in 1994 issued six million vouchers exchangeable into 600 million shares of the would-be PTCL in two separate placements. Each had a par value of Rs. 10 per share. These vouchers were converted into PTCL shares in mid-1996.

In 1995, Pakistan Telecommunication (Reorganization) Ordinance formed the basis for PTCL monopoly over basic telephony in the country. The provisions of the Ordinance were lent permanence in October 1996 through Pakistan Telecommunication (Reorganization) Act. The same year, Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited was formed and listed on all stock exchanges of Pakistan

PTCL launched its mobile and data services subsidiaries in 2001 by the name of Ufone and PakNet respectively. None of the brands made it to the top slots in the respective competitions. Lately, however, Ufone had increased its market share in the cellular sector. The PakNet brand has effectively dissolved over the period of time. Recent DSL services launched by PTCL reflects this by the introduction of a new brand name and operation of the service being directly supervised by PTCL.

A shop of Pakistan Telecommunication Company Ltd (PTCL) in Islamabad

As telecommunication monopolies head towards an imminent end, services and infrastructure providers are set to face even bigger challenges. The post-monopoly era came with Pakistan’s Liberalization in Telecommunication in January 2003. On the Government level, a comprehensive liberalization policy for telecoms sector is in the offering.

In 2005, Government of Pakistan decided to sell 26 percent of this company to some private corporation. There were three participants in the bet for privatization of PTCL. Etisalat, a Abu Dhabi-based company was able to get the shares with a large margin in the bet.[2] Government's plan of privatizing the corporation were not welcomed in all circles; countrywide protests and strikes were held by PTCL workers. They disrupted phone lines of institutions like Punjab University Lahore along with public sector institutions were also blocked. Military had to take over the management of all the exchanges in the country.[3] They arrested many workers and put them behind bars. The contention between Government and employees ended with a 30% increase in the salaries of workers.

IHC orders PTCL to pay pensioners at par with federal govt employees[edit]

ISLAMABAD: A division bench of Islamabad High Court (IHC), comprising Justice Riaz Ahmad Khan and Justice Noorul Haq N. Qureshi, directed the Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL) on Monday to pay pensions to its 40,000 retired employees equal to those being received by the retired employees of the federal government. The company had filed an intra-court appeal (ICA) against the decision of a single-member bench, comprising Chief Justice IHC Justice Muhammad Anwar Khan Kasi, who in April last year directed the company to increase the pension of its retired employees and bring it on a par with that of retired employees of the federal ministries and attached departments. The IHC division bench dismissed the ICA of PTCL and upheld the judgment of Justice Kasi.The PTCL pensioners association through their representative M. H. Aslam adopted before the court that despite the fact that the Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunication and Law Ministry had already recommended an increase in the PTCL monthly pension but the PTCL management had not complied with the directives. The petitioner prayed to the court to issued directions to the PTCL management to increase the pension of pensioners and pay them their arrears. Legal counsel for the PTCL Naeem Bokhari advocate opposed the increase and requested the court to set aside the judgment of single judge. Meanwhile, the same division bench of the IHC suspended the orders of another single bench that on June 18 last year ordered 20 percent increase in the salaries of all federal government employees on account of ‘special allowance’ in accordance with the employees of secretariat. The federal government through Deputy Attorney General (DAG) Sheikh Mohammad Yaqoob challenged the June 18 orders of Justice Shaukat Aziz Siddiqui saying that the said allowance would cost Rs50 billion per annum to the national exchequer that the government could not afford. The DAG said 20 per cent special allowance was approved for those employees of the Prime Minister’s Secretariat who sat late in the office and were frequently asked to work even on their weekly off days. The federal government is already paying 300 per cent special allowance to the superior judiciary’s employees and 100 per cent to policemen and the staff working at the presidency, the DAG further said. He argued that the IHC single bench in its order did not exclude the departments where the employees were already getting the said allowance and directed the government to pay additional allowance to the tune of 20 per cent of their basic salary to all employees of federal government and its allied department and ministries. The DAG prayed to the court to set aside the June 18 decision. The former government of Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) had approved the special allowance on March 6, 2013 for the employees of Prime Minister’s Secretariat. The employees of the Federal Government College Teachers Association, Capital Development Authority, Pakistan Council of Science and Technology, the National Archives, the Departments of Communication Security and of Libraries, the National Centre for Rural Development, Pakistan Public Works Department and the Cabinet Division had challenged the increase and prayed that they be also given the same increase. Acceding to their arguments, Justice Siddiqui directed the federal government to pay 20 percent special allowance to all employees of the federal government.


PTCL is a part of the consortium of three major Submarine communication cable networks: SEA-ME-WE 3, SEA-ME-WE 4 and I-ME-WE.


PTCL provides its fixed line telephone services in many cities of Pakistan.

Vfone Network Shutdown[edit]

Voice services used to be provided through PTCL's CDMA2000 network, which was broadcast over the 1900 MHz WLL frequency under the 'Vfone' brand name, however the network was shut down on 31 August 2016 nationwide.[4]

Internet / High Speed Broadband[edit]

Being Pakistan's largest ADSL2+ provider, PTCL primarily provides its customers with ADSL broadband, however as demand for higher bandwidth connections has increased, PTCL is upgrading its customers to VDSL2 and FTTH GPON in a few major cities, namely Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad, Rawalpindi and Peshawar.


Wireless options are also available under the 'EVO Nitro' or 'CharJi Evo' brand names. The former being based on EvDo Rev A and B, and the latter using LTE technology. This is done using PTCL's 1900 MHz WLL frequency that was previously used for their Vfone CDMA2000 network. There is seamless LTE coverage in Karachi, Lahore, Rawalpindi and Islamabad, whereas there is coverage for EvDo Rev B (up to 9.3 Mbps) in the remaining 200+ cities.

Ufone GSM is also a wholly owned subsidiary of PTCL, it also the 3rd largest cellular provider in the country. It provides both GSM and HSPA+ services over the 900, 1800 and 2100 MHz bands.[5]


In addition to these services, PTCL also offers one of the world's first commercial Digital HD TV services based on DVB-IPTV with the brand name of Smart TV.[6] PTCL users can also stream live TV using the SmartTV application for Windows and Android OS.[7]

Company profile[edit]

PTCL is the largest telecommunications provider in Pakistan. PTCL also continues to be the largest CDMA operator in the country with 0.8 million V-fone customers. The company maintains a leading position in Pakistan as an infrastructure provider to other telecom operators and corporate customers of the country. It has the potential to be an instrumental agent in Pakistan’s economic growth. PTCL has laid Optical Fibre Access Network in the major metropolitan centres of Pakistan and local loop services have started to be modernized and upgraded from copper to an optical network. On the Long Distance and International infrastructure side, the capacity of two SEA-ME-WE submarine cable is being expanded to meet the increasing demand of International traffic.[8]

Change in Number format[edit]

PTCL had started with 10 digit numbers for digital telephones. The first three (in case of smaller cities, 4 or 5) signified the area code (e.g. 042 for Lahore) and the rest (7 for large cities, 6 or 5 for smaller ones) were the subscriber's number. Due to the large demand for landlines in Lahore and Karachi, in 2009, PTCL decided to increase the 7-digit subscriber numbers to 8-digits, adding "9" before existing Government numbers and "3" before the others (e.g. the number 042-7878787 before 2009, was changed to 042-37878787).[9]

Controversy with Nayatel and Bahria Town CCP notice[edit]

Ever since Nayatel started offering its FTTH (Fiber-To-The-Home) services in the twin cities, PTCL has lost a substantial amount of market share in this region due to Nayatel offering more services under one brand, and at competitive prices.

In August 2016, a complaint from a resident of Bahria Town (Pvt. Ltd) was forwarded to the CCP which revealed that Bahria Town was deliberately preventing other fixed line service providers from expanding into Bahria Town, and thus giving PTCL the majority of the market share in the housing society, not to mention it was in violation of the Competition Act (2010) by abusing its dominant position and entering into a prohibited agreement.[10][11]

Six months later, CCP imposed a fine to Bahria Town of 2 Million PKR for deliberately not issuing a NOC (No-Objection Certificate) to Nayatel in Phases 1 to 6.[12]

Bahria Town has been directed to work with Nayatel to lay down its Fiber Optic cable network in Phases 1 to 6.[13][14][15]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "PTCL Annual Report 2015" (PDF). Retrieved 17 April 2016. 
  2. ^ "Pakistan on Monday accepted an offer by Emirates Telecommunications Corp", June 21, 2005,
  3. ^ "Troops take control of key PTCL installations", 13 June 2005, Gulf Times
  4. ^ "Vfone Closure". Retrieved 2017-03-15. 
  5. ^ "Company Profile". Retrieved 2017-03-15. 
  6. ^ "Better than Cable - PTCL Smart TV". Retrieved 2017-03-15. 
  7. ^ "Smart TV App". Retrieved 2017-03-15. 
  8. ^ PTCL Website - Company Information
  9. ^ "PTCL changes numbers to 8 digits in Karachi, Lahore". 7 June 2009. Retrieved 30 January 2017. 
  10. ^ "CCP Issues Show Cause Notice to Bahria Town for Blocking Nayatel in Rawalpindi". 2016-08-04. Retrieved 2017-02-07. 
  11. ^ "CCP issues show-cause notice to Bahria Town for abuse of dominance". The Nation. Retrieved 2017-02-07. 
  12. ^ "CCP Fines Bahria Town for Not Allowing Nayatel to Operate in It". Today's Pakistan & World Latest News. 2017-02-07. Retrieved 2017-02-07. 
  13. ^ Desk, News. "Competition Commission imposes Rs 2m fines on Bahria Town | Profit by Pakistan Today". Retrieved 2017-02-07. 
  14. ^ Zulqernain. "CCP fines Bahria Town for misusing its dominant position". Retrieved 2017-02-07. 
  15. ^ "CCP Fines Bahria Town for Not Allowing Nayatel to Operate in It". 2017-02-07. Retrieved 2017-02-07. 

External links[edit]