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Process to Set up Export and Import Business in India

calendar10 Feb, 2022
timeReading Time: 3 Minutes
Export and Import Business

Commencing a new export and import business can be an intricate undertaking. Start-ups entering into the Exim domain will likely have a long list of queries, ranging from the documentation required to the legal implications they must adhere to. This article intends to guide new businesses through the process of establishing their export and import business in India.

Steps to set up export and import business in India

Below is the definitive guide to establish export and import business in India

Secure PAN for your Company

There are certain types of documentation required for setting up export and import business, starting with a PAN Card. You must possess valid identification and address proof to register your business.

It is a legal compulsion for registered businesses to apply for a PAN Card with the IT department. The process of securing a PAN is more or less identical to that of applying for a personal PAN.

Choose an apt Business structure

The next step is to select an apt business structure. You can choose among the following structures governed by different legislations.

  • LLP (limited liability partnership act 2008)
  • Private limited company (Companies Act, 2013)
  • One Person Company (Companies Act, 2013)
  • Partnership Firm (Partnership Act, 1932)

Before you select one of the above business structures, take the following parameter into account.

  • Structure of ownership
  • Scope of operation
  • Scope of management
  • Quantum of Compliances

Open a Current Account in a Designated Bank

Opening a current account is mandatory to execute business-related transactions. Your export and import business must have an existing account to perform finance-related transactions with customers or any concerned parties. While applying to a current account, the bank may ask the applicant to submit documents depending on the type of business structure.

Secure IEC Code from DGFT

The Import Export Code (IEC) is granted under the Foreign Trade Policy. The Directorate General of Foreign Trade has the authority to grant this license. You can also avail Corpbiz services in case you wish to avoid the hassle of addressing messy paperwork or compliances for securing this permit.

Obtain Registration Cum Membership Certificate (RCMC)

India has various export-promoting councils that promote the export of different classes of products and services. Registration with these councils enables to export and import businesses to access various growth-driven benefits. It is also necessary to access certain benefits under FTP i.e., Foreign Trade Policy[1]. RCMC acts as a bridge between Exim business and export promotion councils.

Additional Certificates to Ensure Success for Export and Import Business

Here are a few more certificates that you would like to secure for ensuring the growth of your Export and Import Business.

Trademark Registration

Trademark Registration is vital in cases where chances of infringement of intellectual property become more than probable. This not only hinders the firm’s growth but also, at times, pushes the owner to face costly litigation. Thus, trademark registration is more than necessary for businesses in today’s dynamic marketplace.

ISO 9001

ISO 9001 is a set of policies and processes that enable businesses to strengthen their core areas, eventually leading to improved business performance. Implementing ISO 9001 standards is the best way of identifying, probing, and improving key business areas lacking efficacy. ISO 9001 certification serves as an international standard for quality management systems.

MSME Certificate

Having MSME Certificate or Udhyam Registration in place ensures that exporters access various government schemes and initiatives. Such a certificate comes in handy for small exporters that lack adequate funds and other resources to grow their business.


Securing the above permits and registration is compulsory to lay down the foundation of export and import business in India. Of course, there is some paperwork linked to these licenses that the applicant needs to arrange beforehand. You can also avail Corpbiz services to ease out the licensing process and document work.

Read our Article:RCMC Certificate for Exporters: Procedure, Documents, and Benefits

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