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Import/ Export Code (IEC)


  • Global Market Reach
  • Life Time Validity
  • No Annual Maintenance
  • Reduces the risk of Illegal transportation
  • No Compliance

Who requires IEC Code-

  • Clear Shipments
  • In case of imports
  • Receipt of any foreign currency
  • Required for Goods and Services


IMPORT EXPORT CODE or IEC refers to a 10-digit identification number that is issued by the Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT), Ministry of Commerce and Industries, Government of India to the applicant who is involved in any kind of import or export of goods or services from India.

Is IE Code imperative? Who needs it?

Yes IE Code is imperative for importer and exporter in India. The individuals or business organisations who are engaged in importing or exporting goods and services from India, need IEC. Individuals who are proprietors of a business can obtain IE Code in their name.

Validity of Import Export Code

IEC is valid to be used by the entity throughout the tenure and does not require any renewal or filing. The validity of IEC issued is the same for all the branches or factories that an importer/exporter owns, whatever the case is or can be. Therefore, it is recommended for most organizations to obtain the IE Code, irrespective of whether they need it at the moment or not.

What is the purpose of IEC?

All the exporters who are engaged in the export of goods or services from India need an import export code registration to quote during the shipments of goods or services.

IE Code can be used by that entity for all its import or export transactions without any further hassles. Without the IEC, you cannot participate in the international market.

The banks also need the IE Code of the exporters for receiving payments from abroad.

Application for IEC

Application for IEC is an application that is submitted by the respective Importer/Exporter to the Directorate General of Foreign Trade along with the relevant supporting documents, to obtain the 10-digit identification code.

Upon the application submission, DGFT issues an IEC to the entity in the period of 1-2 working days.

Details and Documents (Required to apply for IEC)

  • Copy of Entity’s PAN Card
  • Business Address Proof
  • Photograph and KYC of Directors or
  • Partners or Proprietor
  • Valid Indian Mobile no. of Director or Partners or Proprietor
  • Charter documents of Entities
  • Letter of Authorized Signatory/Board Resolution
  • Director or Partners or Proprietor e-mail ID
  • Cancelled Cheque or Pass Book or Bank Statement

You can also avail the IE registration services for the import-export code registration, to save your time for other productive actions you are good at. In such a case, you just need to share the above-mentioned documents & details, either physically or online by using the scanned copies of the same, the rest of the job is carried by the respective service provider.

IEC Registration Process

Import Export Code (IEC) Registration is an online process which can be divided into simple steps as mentioned below:

  • 1

    Go to DGFT (Directorate General of Foreign Trade) website

  • 2

    Go to “services”, click on “IEC” and select “online IEC application”.

  • 3

    Enter your PAN (Permanent Account Number)

  • 4

    Make sure you are directed to the next page where you will need to enter your PAN

  • 5

    Click on the “Search” option.

    In case, you have entered the incorrect PAN, click on ‘Reset’ button

  • 6

    Enter details for PAN verification

  • 7

    You will be redirected to a page that will ask you to fill the following details:

    • Name (according to PAN).
    • DOB/Incorporation
    • Captcha Code
  • 8

    Click on “Submit” after entering all the details.

    Note: Any wrong detail on the PAN served site will lead to authentication failure. Getting an IEC code in India is a complex process that leads to many IEC rejection by the Department due to numerous reasons. So, it is always better to be alert throughout the IEC Registration process. Next comes the Status of PAN verification.

  • 9

    If the details are valid, a message stating “your PAN has been verified” will be displayed on the screen. Click on ‘Proceed’.

  • 10

    Login for fresh IEC application

  • 11

    For a new IEC application, give your email address along with your mobile number.

  • 12

    Enter the Captcha code on the right-hand side and then click on ‘Generate OTP.’

    An OTP is sent on the email address as well as your mobile number that is provided.

  • 13

    Enter the OTP and click “Submit.

    In case, you haven’t received any OTP, click on ‘Regenerate OTP’.

  • 14

    Once you click the Submit button after entering OTP, you will find a 20 digit E-commerce number on the screen. On the right side of the screen, you are required to enter the following details:

    • Entity Name
    • Entity Address
    • City
    • State, District, PIN code
    • Mobile number and email address, as provided earlier
    • Name on PAN card, PAN, Date of Incorporation.
    • Nature of Concern such as Proprietorship, LLP, Private Limited, Public Limited, Govt. Undertaking, etc
    • Preferred tasks like Manufacturer Exporter, Merchant Exporter, Service provider, and so on.
    • Bank account number., Name of the Account holder, etc.
    • Details of the Applicant
  • 15

    After entering all the details in the required space, click on “Update and Save”.

  • 16

    This will redirect the applicant to a new page wherein the Bank Details of the firm has to be filled. The details are as follows:

    • Branch SI. No
    • Address of the Branch along with the city, state, and district
    • 6 digits PIN
  • 17

    Click on “Add Button” and make sure you are directed to another page where you need to update the details of Director/Proprietor/Partner/Karta/Managing Trustee

  • 18

    Update the below-mentioned details about your Director/ Proprietor/ Partner/ Karta/ Managing Trustee.

    • Director SI.No
    • DIN (Director Identification Number)
    • Name, PAN, Date of Birth, etc.
    • Address
    • Mobile Number
    • Aadhaar Card Number and other information as asked.
  • 19

    Click on ‘ADD’ and Upload Documents such as Address proof and Cancelledcheque or Bank certificate

    Note: The document needs to be uploaded either in GIF format or PDF format, by clicking the “Upload File” option. The size of the document must not exceed 5MB. For address proof, you can use any of the following documents:

    • Sale Deed
    • Rent Agreement
    • Lease Deed
    • Mobile Postpaid bill
    • MOU (Memorandum of Understanding)
    • Electricity Bill
    • Telephone Landline bill
    • Partnership Deed

    Other acceptable documents are Passport, Voter ID, and Aadhaar Card but only for Proprietorship.

    When the name of the applicant firm isn’t present in the address proof, then the applicant must submit a NOC (No-Objection Certificate) in favour of the firm along with address proof in a PDF format.

  • 20

    Fee Payment and Fee Verification

  • 21

    Preview all the details filled in the application form. After verifying it thoroughly and finding it correct, click on “Print Application”.

  • 22

    Click on “Submit” for the final submission of the application either using Digital Signature or without Digital Signature.

Government fee for iec registration

The government charges an Import Export code registration fee of Rs. 500.00 and it is payable via EFT (Electronic Fund Transfer) during the online submission of the IEC Application form.

Upon the successful submission, the IEC allotment letter with a 10-digit code is dispatched to the address of the applicant via self-address envelope.

After receiving an IEC code, you become eligible to start your importing and exporting businesses.

FAQs on Import Export Code

It is presumed that IEC is only required for import or export of goods. But in reality it is necessary for both goods and services As Import or export of services is an international transaction. Hence, any person providing the services beyond the boundaries of India has to get IEC done.

One IEC can be used for the import and export both. Many people have the wrong idea that separate IEC is required for the Import and Export of Goods or Services, but this is not the case. There is only one registration for import as well as Export.

It is a one-time registration and has a lifetime validity, there is no need to renew it. The IEC is used at the time of importing or exporting or paying or receiving of payments. There are no returns are to be filed for the IEC as no post registration compliances exists.

Earlier, the IEC department use to issue a separate number for IEC code. But recently the Ministry initiated a revision due to which the PAN of the applicant will be the registration number of the IEC. Hence the PAN and the IEC number will be same. The Ministry will register the IEC for the applicant and the Ministry will issue the approval letter immediately after notifying the PAN as their IEC number.

IEC is made compulsory only for the business and commercial purpose. There is no such requirement for IEC to import or export goods for the personal use. Hence, one can import and export goods without any registration for IEC for personal use.

Not every enterprise has to apply for the IEC registration. But as IEC is associated with PAN. Therefore, if a person has more than one proprietorship firm then for every proprietorship firm only one IEC registration is to be taken. It is because the proprietorship firm does not have any separate identity and in that case PAN of an individual is used as PAN of their proprietorship firm. So, if one has allotted more than one IEC for one PAN then he/she has to surrender with the Ministry for cancellation. In case of partnership firm or a LLP or a Company as a separate PAN is allotted to them hence they will need to quote their own PAN.

The State government or the Central government departments doesn’t require to take IEC registration as they are allotted a fixed number which is quoted for any of such transactions pertaining to import or export of goods or services.

Every person who is importing or exporting Goods or services has to take IEC registration. It is mandatory to register a PAN of the applicant with DGFT department if the business involves imports or exports though you have registered under GST

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