Ways to Get an IEC Code for Small Business in India

Get an IEC Code for Small Business
Japsanjam Kaur Wadhera
| Updated: Dec 09, 2020 | Category: IEC

The economic development of India has grown rapidly. The growth in the import and export of the goods and services has encouraged the small businesses and entrepreneurs to start up their venture into this area. For small businesses, it is important to obtain Importer Exporter Code to expand their business internationally. Therefore, this writes up will give you an insight on ways to get an IEC Code for small business in India.

What is IEC?

IEC is an Importer Exporter Code which is mandatory for a small business to obtain, in order to expand its business throughout the world. An entrepreneur can issue an IEC from the office of Director General of Foreign Trade (DGFT), Ministry of Commerce for import-export business in India.

 At the time of clearing the consignment and IEC is asked by the Customs Authority so as to trade the business globally. It is a ten-digit code and is required to obtain in all businesses except of prohibited or restricted goods or services.

Why is IEC needed?

For an entrepreneur to expand his business worldwide, it is not easy for sell his products without obtaining an IEC. Due to the unprecedented legal constraints, it is necessary for small businesses to meet with the legal obligations from customs and other authorities. IEC legalizes the process of import and export for a trader and to prevent facing issues in clearing the shipment of the products.

The holder of the IEC code becomes a registered trader globally. Therefore it helps in benefiting the trader in clearing the consignment from the customs authority and other authorities, receiving payments from overseas buyers, remitting money via authorized banks, obtaining subsidies from the customs and other relating authorities.

Ways to get an IEC Code Online

The Importer Exporter Code (IEC) can be obtained through an online mode by the following procedure:

Ways to get an IEC Code Online

Step 1: Visit to Director General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) Portal

A person obtaining an IEC code need to reach out to the official portal of the DGFT website.

Step 2: Online IEC Application Access

Click on the services section at the homepage and open the “Online IEC Application” to get the access

Step 3: Provide with the PAN Card Number

On the opening of the “Online IEC Application” page, the portal will ask to provide the PAN Card number to proceed to the next step.

Step 4: Verification

Complete the verification requirement by verifying the registered phone number and Email id.

Step 5: e-IEC form filling

On the completion of the verification requirements, a web-based form will be opened on the portal to get an IEC Code for Small Business. All the necessary details along with the soft copy of the documents are to be uploaded. Payment of prescribed fees has to be made. Once the documents are submitted an IEC Code is generated on the portal.

What are the documents needed for small business, under the Partnership Category?

Small businesses in India can also obtain IEC for their business and the documents which are needed for business under the partnership category are: –

  • Voter Id, PAN Card of the director, Passport or UID.
  • Copy of the Partnership deed.
  • Cancelled cheque or bank certificate.
  • Sale Deed – If the business is self-owned.

Also, Read: How to Apply For New Import Export Code Registration

Do’s and Don’ts in the registration of IEC

  • The applicant can fill for the application of IEC online itself.
  • It is not mandatory for all the businesses to obtain IEC; therefore one can determine the exemption for the same.
  • Customer and ECOM reference number must be kept handy.
  • No alteration can be made in the PAN Card number, email id or contact number once the IEC registration is completed at the IEC portal.
  • If the application to obtain IEC code is rejection, the applicant can apply with the registration process again.
  • No person can obtain two IEC codes against one PAN carder number as it is not allowed and permitted under the law.
  • An applicant providing with wrong information in an e-IEC form will be held liable for punishment for committing such offence.
  • The applicant can make alterations or reload the files of the required documents before the registration of the application process is completed.
  • An IEC profile can be modified and be done at the Director-General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) portal on the payment of Rs. 200
  • The applicant must find out the provisions, regulations and limitations of the cross border trading from the legal perspective to avoid obstacles in future.
  • The applicant before obtaining an IEC code must find out the adaptability quality of his product in the given market.
  • The applicant should get out the detailed information of the targeted market in which he seeks to export his products.

Who can obtain the Importer Exporter Code (IEC)?

An IEC code can be obtained by any company or individual who has a valid resident proof and identification proof.

Importer Exporter Code is available at the Director General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) portal where all the applicants are required to fill the form in the given procedure as stated above.

What are the benefits of IEC Registration?

Some of the benefits of IEC Registration are mentioned below:

benefits of IEC Registration

1. No filing of Returns

There is no need to file any returns under IEC code. Once it is allotted, there is no further process or requirement to sustain its validity. There is no need to file any returns with Director General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) for export transactions also.

2. Opportunity to offer the goods or services of a small business at a global platform

Once the entrepreneur obtains an IEC code, it helps him to grow and expand his business in the global market.

3. Easy to process

The process of obtaining an IEC code is fairly easy from the Director General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) which is within a period of 10 to 15 days after the submission of the application. And no proof of any export or import is required to be shown in order to obtain an IEC.

4. Availing Several Benefits

On getting the IEC Registration, an individual or a company can avail many benefits of import and export from the Director General of Foreign Trade (DGFT), customs, export promotion council etc.

5. No requirement for renewal

Since once an IEC is obtained, there is no need to get it renewed and shall be used for a lifetime. It can be used by an individual or a company against all the import and export transactions.


The obtaining of Importer and Exporter Code (IEC) is very important for a small business in India so as to expand its trade throughout the world. The procedure of IEC registration makes the import and export trade hassle-free by legalizing the trade and helps in clearing the consignment from the customs authority and other authorities. Registration of IEC code for small business in India thus serves a lifetime advantage of trading worldwide as the registration need not required to be renewed as well.

IEC encourages small businesses to grow and equally get an opportunity to become a healthy competitor in the market and make efforts to contribute in the economy of the country as well.

Also, Read: Take your Business Global with IEC Code License


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