Overview of IEC Registration
Engaging with export-import activities without IEC registration is not permissible in India and is henceforth deemed as a legal offence. IEC certificate acts as an immediate clearance for exporters and importers in India. IEC code affixes on various shipping documents for custom clearances. Thus, obtaining IEC registration is an absolute mandate, and it should not be overlooked.
What is an Import Export Code?
Import Export Code, i.e. IEC is a ten-digit code conferred by the Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) against prescribed application and fees. IEC registration serves as mandatory legal consent for entities intending to start an export-import business in India. It is also mandatory for manufacturers cum exporters and establishments that continually import raw materials to manufacture goods.
Who needs IEC in India?
Directorate General of Foreign Trade mandates the following to obtain IEC registration in India.
It should be noted that IEC is only available to the registered entities in India. Therefore, make sure to secure a business certificate in the first place before getting engaged with the IEC registration process.
Documents to be uploaded for IEC registration during online filing
Applicants seeking IEC registration are required to visit DGFT's portal and fill out the relevant e-form. During electronic filing, applicants are required to upload the following documentation:
IEC Registration process
Step 1: Secure class-2 Digital signature from a certified agency
A digital signature is conferred by the Certification Authority and is signed with the private key of CA.
A digital signature usually entails the following details:
Digital signatures leverage the PKI technology, i.e. Public Key Infrastructure technology.
Step 2: File an application form with DGFT
Applicants can proceed to DGFT online portal to apply for IEC registration. To serve this purpose, they must create a legit account on the said portal before addressing the registration formalities.
Step 3: Submit requested documentation in prescribed format
During application filling, the applicant shall be prompted to furnish aforesaid documentation. Do the needful to submit the same in format as prompted by the application form
Step 4: Submit application fees
Proceed to the payment section to submit the requested fees upon submitting the application form.
Step 5: Application and documentation inspection
After submitting the IEC registration application, the concerned authority shall initiate the inspection process to make some legal checks.
Step 6: Grant of IEC registration
Authority shall grant the IEC registration after successful vetting of application and documentation.
Validity and Cancellation of IEC registration
IEC registration is non-renewal and comes with lifetime validity. As far as the cancellation of IEC registration is concerned, it may come to effect under the following scenario
Frequently Asked Questions
Following is the exception for IEC registration:
- IEC is not an obligation for the traders registered under Goods & Service Tax (GST)
- If there is export or import of any product merely for personal consumption and not for commercial purpose, there will be no need to obtain IEC Registration
- There is no requirement to obtain IEC Registration in case the import or export is done on behalf of the Government of India by any department, ministry, or notified charitable institute.