How to Start an Import Export Business in India & Its Procedure

Posted on: 2018-03-12 03:04:00

We all know that India is heading towards the business hub where it stood amongst the top 5 countries in the world in terms of startups; so startups scenarios are increasing day by day since from 2014 and they are building the Startup Ecosystem stronger than strong. India is creating a better platform for budding entrepreneurs’ as well as nation’s growth and development.

As per NASSCOM’s report, India will be the homes of 10,500 startups by 2020, so more than 65 percent of startups are already incorporated in various cities like Bengaluru, Delhi NCR, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad, Chennai, Pune and Jaipur as on 2017. A creative thinker can be a part of this to go ahead of his/her career by passion and innovative thought. And apart from this, import or export business is in race with this sector.

Before you jumping towards the import export business, you should cultivate about it properly, see the horizon and go through the deep thought and think about it, really do have I the experience, skill and talent to give the new direction to my business towards the land of new opportunity? Yes, of course, I am the right person to carry out the business into my goal.

What is Import Export Code (IEC)?

Importer Exporter Code is shortly called as IEC is allotted to a person or businesses owners for importing goods/products into or exporting goods/products from India. It is a must required license for an every organization where those are going to start an import export business in India.

Import Export Code is a code which consists of 10 digits of alphanumerical numbers granted by the joint DGFT (Director General of Foreign Trade) office of India under the Ministry of Commerce and Industry to the authorized business entity/person/company for carrying out the import export business in any cities of India or abroad. This is the first legal proof to run your business smoothly.

Features of Import Exports Code Registration

When you get registered your import/export business, you will get benefits from DGFT, Customs, Excise, Export Promotion Council, Foreign Trade Policy and etc. and here you can follow below the following important features and benefits of IEC (Import Export Code).

  • It is the first most document proof of a firm/proprietor/partnership/company for carrying the importer and exporter business certificate.
  • IEC forms is the primary document for recognition by the Government of India as an Importer/Exporter
  • It is most required to obtain IEC before running your business. Means you cannot import goods/products into or export goods/products from in India without it for legal consensus.
  • A sole proprietorship can also obtain his business IEC apart from registering his business name.
  • Once IEC is issued, it has valid for a lifetime. This means that, it does not need any renewal during your business period.
  • Giving a quotation for IEC is must required when you are importing or exporting goods/products in India.
  • Import Export Code (IEC) is mandatory for making international or foreign bank transfer during the business process activities.
  • IEC is legal and valid for all branches of your import export business.
  • IEC is not mandatory for government or personal purposes.

What are the opportunities that you have in export and import business in India?

As such imports and exports form an integral part of the country’s economy and this means that as a budding entrepreneur in this particular domain there are plenty of opportunities waiting at your doorstep. No country in the world can exist without interacting with other countries of the world and import and export form an important part of said interaction. As and when you get into this business there are plenty of opportunities that you can explore.

Looking at the online marketplaces

These days, there are plenty of online sellers such as Amazon, Alibaba, Allexpress, and DHGate to name a few. Here on these sites, as an exporter and importer, you can get listed as a vendor, and then you would be connected to buyers around the world. In this case, the internet would be playing the role of a bridge. This way, you would be exporting your products to your customers who may be thousands of km away from you. This would also open up the international markets to you.

Way to Starting an Importer or Exporter Business

The first step that you need to take in order to start an import export business in India is to have a proper business set up. You should ideally start a sole proprietorship and for this you can get a VAT (value added tax) registration or get registered for service tax as well. You should also have a name and a logo for your business. And after this, you need to follow the certain steps to land your business in a perfect way such as

1. Getting PAN for your business

2. Starting a Current Bank Account in the name of your business

3. Getting Import Export Code from DGFT department

4. Getting RCMC from export promotion councils

Here the steps are summarized below to start an importer or exporter business in Bangalore Karnataka or any other cities in India.

1. Getting a PAN (permanent account number) card for your business

Once you have received the abovementioned registration you should get a PAN card for your business from the income tax department. This is mandatory.

2. Starting a current account

Once you get your business registration followed by the PAN card you would have to start a current bank account. You would need to open this account at a commercial bank. It would be done solely for business purposes.

3. Getting the import export code

The next step in this regard would be to get the import export code (IEC). As far as opening an import and export business in India is concerned this happens to be one of the most important requirements. In fact, you would need the IEC in almost every case with the exception of prohibited and restricted services and goods.

In order to get the IEC you would have to apply straightaway at the website of DGFT (Directorate General of Foreign Trade) wherein we explained it thoroughly below in “how to apply IEC online” para. The documents that you need to provide in order to get the IEC are your personal PAN card or the one that you are using for your company, your photograph, and a copy of a cancelled check from the current account that you are presently maintaining for your business. You should remember in this context that it is mandatory to have a PAN card in order to get this code and you will get only one code for each PAN card.

4. Getting the RCMC

Once you get the IEC you would have to get the RCMC (registration cum membership certificate). These are provided by the export promotion councils. They help you get authorized for imports and exports as well as all other kinds of benefits. India has almost 26 export promotion councils that can provide you an RCMC. Once you have got the RCMC and IEC you would be able to start your export and import business from India as well. The IEC and RCMC are accepted in all businesses and their branches across the country.

Normally, it takes around 5 to 7 days to get all the registrations out of the way.

How to Apply IEC Online

To apply for IEC (Import/Export Code) in Bangalore Karnataka or any other cities of India we must follow the procedure and nowadays all the application process are occurred in online; so, it depends on your regional authorities (RA) area where you want to obtain your importer exporter code (IEC) number. By applying through the proper requisite; then you must have to go for online and log on to the Directorate General of Foreign Trade portal; which comes under the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Government of India and ready to apply IEC online in India.

Here we explained briefly the application procedure of obtaining import export code in India, have a look on it and get an overall idea about IEC registration in Bangalore, Karnataka or any other cities in India and get your IEC Number from the specific joint regional directorate foreign trade department.

Now we are taking you to the online application process of IEC, when you visit the above mentioned site you can find a Menu Bar on top of the site which carries various menus but go for “Online Application” menu Tab, or you can directly go to Quick Links; below that you will find Importer Exporter Code (IEC) through this you can apply also then see the below steps for the process of import export code registration.

Setp-1: Visit to site; go for “Importer Exporter Code (IEC)” link below the Quick Links then click on “Online IEC Application” option for fresh application.

Step-2: When you click on the “Online IEC Application”, it is promptly landed to the “Login for IEC Online” page with displaying Enter Your PAN box.

Enter your or company PAN number and click to NEXT button. Then it will display MOBILE and EMAIL ID box in addition to your given PAN number. You have to fill that Mobile Number and Email Id box and click on GENERATE TOKEN button verifying with the captcha code.

After clicking on GENERATE TOKEN button, in same dialog box you will find “Mobile Token” and “Email Token” blank field and a message has already came to your given Mobile Number and Email ID bearing with Mobile Token and Email Token. You have to fill this two box and click on the SUBMIT button with verifying the captcha.

Step-3: After clicking on SUBMIT button, you will be directed to Importer Exporter Code (e-IEC) window and here you see the left side bar of the window and click on IEC Master and fill the Fresh IEC Application form with required data. And submit it.

Step-4: Go for side bar and click on the Branch menu that just down to IEC Master. Fill the form if you have any branches, otherwise you can leave it.

Step-5: In step five, click on Director Link from side bar and fill all the data regarding to Proprietor/ Designated Partner/ Director of the company and submit it.

Step-6: Click on Appl. Fee link from same side bar and make a payment here of Rs. 500 online.

Step-7: Click on Verify Fee link from same side bar, if your payment is done it will be verified automatically.

Step-8: Click on Attachments link and here you will have to attach Photo in GIF format, PAN card and Cancelled Cheque in PDF format.

Step-9: Click on Checklist link and it will show a list of information that you have to choose Yes or No option according to your uploaded information.

Step-10: Click on Preview link to check what information you have given here and it will display all your given data in ANF-2A form.

Step-11: In step eleven, click on Print Appl. link and take the physical copy of application; in which this will have to submit in your Regional Director General of Foreign Trade department office.  for further use

Step-12: Click on Submit (Dig. Sig) link, here you must required a Digital Signature to proof the identification of the applicant.

Step-13: Last step is Appl. Status; here you can check the progress of your IEC application status. By verifying your

Documents required for import export code registration

For a smooth and continuous registration process, keep the following documents details in your hand and be ready

  • Digital Photograph of the Signatory Applicant
  • Self attested PAN card copy of the applicant (Proprietor’s or Company’s or Partnership’s PAN card in case of proprietorship or company or partnership)
  • Bank Certificate
  • Details of your bank account
  • Copy of Passport/Voter ID/Driving License/Aadhaar Card
  • In Application form your signature must be there on every page
  • Company Incorporation Certificate
  • MOA/AOA or Partnership deed

After completion of all your process you will get your IEC certificate by speed post or courier from the department of DGFT within 3 to 7 days.


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Procedure for Importer and Exporter in India