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What is Import Export Code ?
Import Export Code more commonly known as IEC is a ten digit code number. It is given to an Importer or Exporter by Director General of Foreign Trade, Ministry of Commerce and Industries, Government of India. Any Entrepreneur who wishes to import something to India or export something from India requires an import export code. It has a permanent validity. There are certain benefits of this code. Though exporters need not necessarily apply for this code, however, they will miss out the otherwise provided benefits. Also, RBI is now making the mention of IEC code mandatory in bank account.
This code generally comes in play when you decide to expand your business globally. Code can be obtained on your name(in case of proprietorship) or on your company’s name. To register Import Export Code a proper procedure is followed. This registration is governed by The Foreign Trade Act, 1992.
However, obtaining a code doesn’t permit you to start importing or exporting. A License and other documents are also required. IEC code is just a requirement which provides certain benefits.
Reasons to register a IE Code
Requirement for Importeres
All Importers msut quote the IE Code while clearing customs. Also, banks require the importers IE Code while sending money abroad.
Requirement for Exporters
The IE Code must be quoted while sending shipments. And banks require the exporters IE Code while receiving money from abroad.
No Return Filling
After IE Code is issued, further procedures are not required to maintain validity of the IE Code. No filings are required to the Director General of Foreign Trade, even in case import export transactions take place.
Proprietors can have IE Code
Incorporating a business entity is not necessary to obtain IE Code. Individuals being proprietors of business can obtain IE Code in their name.
No Renewal needed
Once a IE Code is obtained no renewal is necessary, it is issued for a lifetime.
How Can you Get IEC?
First of all, you need to ensure if you are eligible for getting an import export code. To be eligible, you should have the following documents. Make sure you have them all before you apply for import export code.
Premises proof (property papers, if self-owned / rent agreement if rented)
Current bank account
Company’s cover Letter for the issue of IEC number.
An IEC application form is submitted to regional joint DGFT office with the above documents attached.