IEC Registration

Engaging in export-import activities without IEC registration is not permitted in India and is therefore considered a legal offense. The IEC certificate acts as an instant clearance for exporters and importers in India. IEC code is affixed on various shipping documents for custom clearance. Thus, obtaining IEC registration is an absolute mandate, and should not be ignored.

What is an Import Export Code?

Import export code, i.e. IEC is a ten digit code provided by the Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) against prescribed application and fee. IEC registration acts as a mandatory legal consent for entities wishing to start export-import business in India. It is also mandatory for manufacturers cum exporters and establishments which continuously import raw materials for manufacturing of goods.

Who needs IEC in India?

The Directorate General of Foreign Trade mandates the following for obtaining IEC registration in India.

  • Exporter and importer
  • Export house
  • Manufacturer cum exporter
  • Production facilities importing raw materials
  • Importer of goods obtaining special authorization from DGFT
  • Entities wishing to engage in EXIM business

It should be noted that IEC is available only for entities registered in India. So, make sure to secure the business certificate before getting involved in the IEC registration process.

Documents to be uploaded for IEC registration during online filing

Applicants seeking IEC registration have to visit the portal of DGFT and fill up the relevant e-form. During electronic filing, applicants need to upload the following documents:

  • Copy of business certificate like incorporation certificate, partnership deed
  • Passport, PAN, Voter ID, DL of the Managing Partner
  • Tenancy proof of place of business
  • Bank certificate or canceled check (in case of partnership firm)

IEC Registration Process

Step 1: Secure Class-2 Digital Signature from Certifying Agency

A digital signature is provided by a certification authority and signed with the CA’s private key.

A digital signature usually includes the following details:

  • Owner’s public key
  • Owner’s name
  • Public-key expiration date
  • Issuer name
  • Serial number
  • Issuer’s digital signature

Digital signature PKI technology, Means public key infrastructure technology.

Step 2: File an application with DGFT

Applicants can visit the DGFT online portal to apply for IEC registration. For this purpose, they have to create a legal account on the said portal before completing the registration formalities.

Step 3: Submit the requested documents in the prescribed format

While filling the application, the applicant will be prompted to submit the above documents. Take necessary action to submit it in the format prescribed by the application form

Step 4: Submit Application Fee

On submission of application form proceed to the payment section to deposit the requested fee.

Step 5: Application and Document Inspection

After submitting the IEC registration application, the concerned authority will start the inspection process to conduct some legal checks.

Step 6: Grant of IEC Registration

The authority will grant IEC registration after successful vetting of the application and documents.

Benefits of IEC registration are as follows:

  1. Global recognition: IEC registration is a unique 10-digit number that is recognized by the government of India and is also internationally recognized. This helps in expanding the business and reaching out to a global market.
  2. Access to government schemes: Businesses that have IEC registration can avail themselves of various government schemes such as MEIS, SEIS, and Export Promotion Capital Goods Scheme (EPCG). These schemes offer various incentives, subsidies, and benefits to businesses that engage in import and export activities.
  3. Facilitation of banking operations: IEC registration is mandatory for businesses to obtain a current account in a bank for international transactions. This helps in easy and smooth banking operations for businesses engaged in import and export activities.
  4. Increases credibility: IEC registration helps in enhancing the credibility of the business as it is a mandatory requirement for businesses engaged in import and export activities. It also helps in building trust with the government and customers.
  5. Expansion of business: IEC registration helps businesses in expanding their business by engaging in international trade. This helps in increasing the market reach and revenue of the business.
  6. Tax benefits: Businesses that have IEC registration can avail themselves of various tax benefits such as exemptions, refunds, and reductions on customs duty, GST, and other taxes related to import and export activities.

Validity and Cancellation of IEC Registration

IEC registration is non-renewable and comes with lifetime validity. As far as cancellation of IEC registration is concerned, it can take effect in the following scenario

  • Export or import of prohibited goods
  • Misleading custom authority by fabricating information in shipping documents
  • Non-observance of custom’s instructions
  • Violation of norms mentioned under Foreign Trade Policy


Application for obtaining IEC Number in made online at DGFT website in the prescribed form ANF 2A.

Yes, PAN is mandatory. Self-Certified Photocopy of PAN card of the Applicant has to be submitted along with the application.

All applications will be processed and disposed within 5-6 working days of their receipt.

Import-Commodity code isn't an expense enlistment; notwithstanding, contingent on the item, the specific custom obligation can be forced.

You can modify your application numerous times before it is submitted to the next department.

With the help of IEC Registration, you can obtain various benefits from the DGFT, Customs, export promotion council, etc.

Indeed, it is compulsory to give Dish Card. You want to outfit oneself validated duplicate of your Skillet Card alongside the application.

You would have to give evidence of address duplicate of proprietorship title, enlisted duplicate of rent deed, duplicate of phone bill, power bill, enrolled duplicate of lease deed, and so on should be given to demonstrate the validity of your firm.

No, the validity of IEC Registration is of a lifetime. Therefore there is no requirement to revalidate it.

Cancellation of the allotted IEC can be made by surrendering the same.

Login to DGFT website > Proceed with registration process by clicking on Login > Register as user > Register as “Importer/Exporter”, Go to My Dashboard after registration > Importer Exporter Code (IEC) > Apply for IEC.

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