The Tajik Government last year issued a decree on registration of telecommunications means, and in the framework of this decree, IMEI codes of all mobile phones will be registered.

Experts say IMEI registration is necessary to reduce the number of phone thefts.  According to them registration of IMEI codes will reduce the number of such crimes by 70 percent.  

Besides, registration of IMEI codes will allow nullifying the phone smuggling market in the country.  

The communications service agency says registration of IMEI codes and further service will be free of charge. 

The International Mobile Equipment Identity (IMEI) is a number, usually unique, to identify 3GPP and iDEN mobile phones, as well as some satellite phones.  It is usually found printed inside the battery compartment of the phone, but can also be displayed on-screen on most phones by entering *#06# MMI Supplementary Service code on the dialpad, or alongside other system information in the settings menu on smartphone operating systems.

GSM networks use the IMEI number to identify valid devices, and can stop a stolen phone from accessing the network.  For example, if a mobile phone is stolen, the owner can have their network provider use the IMEI number to blacklist the phone.  This renders the phone useless on that network and sometimes other networks, even if the thief changes the phone's subscriber identity module (SIM).

Devices without a SIM card slot usually don't have the IMEI code.  However, the IMEI only identifies the device and has no particular relationship to the subscriber.  The phone identifies the subscriber by transmitting the International mobile subscriber identity (IMSI) number, which it stores on a SIM card that can, in theory, be transferred to any handset.  However, the network's ability to know a subscriber's current, individual device enables many network and security features.