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Import Export (IE) Code India is a registration of an import and export companies with Indian Custom department that import and export commodities from India. IE Code is issued by the Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT), Ministry of Commerce and Industries, Government of India. IE Code application must be made to the Directorate General of Foreign Trade along with the necessary supporting documents. Once, the application is submitted, DGFT will issue the IE Code for the entity in 15 - 20 working days or less. IEC (Import Export Code) license is one of such prerequisites when you’re thinking of importing or exporting from India. It is also known as Importer- Exporter Code.
IEC (Import Export Code) is required by anyone who is looking to kick-start his/her import/export business in the country. It is issued by the DGFT (Director General of Foreign Trade). IEC is a 10-digit code, which has a lifetime validity. Importers merchant cannot import goods without the Import Export Code and similarly, the exporter merchant cannot avail benefits from DGFT for the export scheme, etc. without IEC.
This code has many names, like importer exported code, import export code, import export license, import export number, IE code, IE license etc. You can issue this code in either your name or under company’s name. Once issued, it is valid for all its division/units/factories/branches.
IE Code registration is permanent registration, which is valid for a lifetime. Hence, there will be no hassles for updating, filing and renewal of IE Code registration. It is valid until the business exists or the registration is revoked or surrendered. Further, unlike tax registrations like GST registration or PF registration, the importer or exporter does not require to file any filings or follow any other compliance requirement like annual filing.
As IE code registration is one-time and requires no additional compliance, it is recommended for all companies and LLPs to obtain IE code after incorporation.
Step 1 : Application Preparation: In order to get code an application must be made in the Aayaat Niryaat Form 2A format to the DGFT in that region where the registered office of the company is established. Government has also arranged online filing facility for obtaining IEC CODE ONLINE.
Step 2: Application Processing: Details of the business and its proprietors, directors or partners, bank account details and a bank certificate are the basic requirements of ANF 2A. All the required documents for IEC need to be submitted with ANF 2A. Digital signature is required on the ANF2A form.
Step 3 : IEC fee payment: Once the application if complete, it should be filed with DGFT and an application fee need to be paid to the government. IEC department may send back your application for correction / change. You need to reply back to the DGFT in 15 days.
Step 4 : IE Code Issuance: Once the application is completely verified by the department, the Directorate General of Foreign Trade will allot an IE Code for your business. This IE code comes in both soft copy and hard copy. You receive the softcopy via email and can start the import export transaction with this.
The following are the documents required for making an IE Code application in India.
LLP or Private Limited Company or Section 8 Company
Society or Trust
Under the Goods and Services Tax Act, 2017 indirect tax would be levied on the goods that are imported into the country. This will also apply to interstate ways of making trade.
For record, the GSTIN number is required to be quoted when products are imported into the country. This method has to be carried out regularly for every transaction. Apart from this, the Permanent Account Number (PAN) is utilised for IEC number.
GSTIN would be quoted on transactions which represent the inflow of imports. This will be used to calculate the interstate trade. For any other form of refund or rebate which is applicable, the GSTIN number should also be quoted.
Any Government Institution carrying out the processes and procedures related to import and export would not require any import export code.
It is has been clarified vide Trade Notice No. 39/2018-19 dated 12th December 2018 that a cheque without a pre-printed name of the account holder will not be acceptable. Further, the pre-printed cheque can be of savings account or current account. It is to be noted that the above-referred documents need to be uploaded online in digital format-GIF, JPEG and the document size should not exceed 5MB.
Diversification of Business: One of the main benefits of applying for IEC is to expand business opportunities. This can be achieved not only through exports, but also through imports into India. Any entrepreneur or company can have seamless experience without any compliance burden.
Government Benefits: Registering under the IEC system would automatically provide the business with benefits. Any form of compliance related provisions can be adhered by the business. Apart from this, there would be certain schemes, which would provide benefits to businesses.
No Requirement to File Returns: No returns are required to be filed under this system. Hence one the code is assigned there is no requirement to prove the certification’s legitimacy by filing of returns.
Only One Time Registration: As per the requirement of the business, this compliance for registration has to be carried out only once. Though a business cannot carry out any activities related to export and import without this license. However, when a business or proprietor takes this license, there is no requirement to renew this license.
Seamless Processing: The system related to IEC registration is completely online. Hence, processing time would be quick when compared to the offline procedure. Under this system, the applicant is provided an OTP number when an initial application for registration is made. Therefore, through this system, seamless processing times can be achieved.
Authorised by Government: When carrying out exports from India, products, which are shipped, would be certified as per the requirements of the DGFT. Therefore, through this process, increased reputation can be achieved.
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