Import Export Code or IEC refers to a code of ten digits which is issued by Director General of Foreign Trade to different Indian companies. IEC is compulsory for all those companies who wish to carry on Import Export business in India. If a company wants to apply for IEC then the applicant should apply from his head office to the nearest office of Regional Authority of Directorate General Foreign Trade. One should know that an individual can only have a single IEC issued against a PAN number. No proprietor can avail more than one IEC.
People who wish to apply for IEC can do so through internet as well. The form for applying for IEC can be downloaded from Internet in WORD or PDF format. Once an applicant receives an IEC number then he can use that number for all the branches/units and sub units of his firm. In case, IEC is lost by the proprietor then he can apply for a duplicate copy of IEC. However, the proprietor needs to apply for the duplicate along with an affidavit. Any proprietor who does not want to use the IEC number allotted to him can get it cancelled by applying the concerned authority. This may happen in those cases where a proprietor decides to wind up his firm.
One should understand that in India one cannot operate an Import Export business without having an IEC number. There are various provisions and eligibility conditions for those people who wish to apply for IEC. A person can read all these provisions by taking a look at Foreign Trade (Regulation) Rules, 1993 Ministry of Commerce. PAN number is very important while applying for IEC. The application fee for the IEC is RS.250. In order to file an application for the IEC, an applicant should visit the official website of DGFT.
There are some categories of companies which are exempted from the compulsion of getting IEC for Import and Export in India. Companies which fall in to these categories do not need an IEC for carrying out import export in India. Departments of state and central governments, people transferring or getting goods from outside for personal use etc. are exempted from the compulsion of getting an IEC for foreign trade. Current bank account number, PAN number, Bankers certificate and other documents are required for getting an IEC.