How to apply for an Importer Exporter Code (IEC)

Apply for an IEC

Export Trade from India has grown steadily over the years with the awareness of international opportunites and e-commerce export programmes from websites like Amazon, Etsy, Ebay, Walmart, etc.

The first step of taking your Indian business to the global stage is getting an Importer Exporter Code (IEC). Applying for an IEC is easier than ever, thanks to the simple online process we'll guide you through in this blog post.

What is an IEC?

Think of it as your passport to the world of imports and exports. This 10-digit code, issued by the Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT), identifies your business as a legitimate player in the international market. It's mandatory for anyone importing or exporting goods or services beyond India's borders.

It is issued based on the Permanent Account Number (PAN) of a business. An IEC is your essential key to international trade, allowing individuals and businesses to import and export goods or services. It also opens doors to smoother customs, valuable incentives from export promotion councils, and a world of global opportunities

How to apply for an IEC?

IEC can be applied online in a few simple steps. Earlier, application for IEC was done through offline mediums. However, a recent update in the policies of the DGFT, only online applications are valid, making it easier for individuals or businesses.

Before you start here are the documents to keep handy:

  • Business Address proof
  • Passport size photographs
  • Cancelled cheque
  • PAN card of the business owner

Here’s a detailed guide to aid in the process of applying and registering for an IEC:

Log on to the DGFT website:

Head over to and navigate to the "Services" tab. Click on "IEC Profile Management" and then "Apply for IEC"

New to the DGFT website? No worries, just register for an account.

Enter your PAN details:

Once you have logged in. the screen displayed in front of you will ask for your PAN. This is your unique business identifier, so make sure it's accurate. Once you enter your PAN details you'll also need to provide your mobile number and email address for verification. Post that, enter the CAPTCHA code and generate the token.

On successful verification of the code, necessary details will be required. For an individual:

  1. Name
  2. Date of birth

For a business:

  1. Business name
  2. Date of incorporation

After filling all the details, enter the OTP received on your mobile number and email and click submit.

Fill in your business details:

The next page will display an E-COM number that will be used for all future communications regarding your e-IEC application. You are required to enter details regarding your business in this form. Enter your business name, date of incorporation, nature of your concern, and bank details.

You will also be asked to enter applicant details including date of birth, name, applicant address, PAN, date and place of submission. Next, fill the branch details relating to your business. In case of no branches, this space can be left empty.

Partner up (if applicable):

If you're running a partnership firm, this is where you list your partner's details. No partner? No problem, just leave this section blank.

Upload documents and pay fees:

Scan and upload your address proof, bank certificate, and cancelled cheque in the format selected, such as PDF or GIF.

Then, choose your preferred payment method and pay the application fee.

Preview and submit your application:

After completing all the above steps, you can preview your application form and print it as a record for official purposes. Double-check everything for accuracy, then click "submit" to officially send off your application.

Bonus Tip: Download the ANF2A PDF and attach it with attested copies of appendix 18B form and 2 passport-size photos. This is only required for online applications. Your IEC certificate will be generated by the DGFT within a period of 10 to 15 days after submitting the application.

The Perks of IEC Registration:

  • Expand your reach: Tap into a global market of potential customers and skyrocket your business growth.
  • Easy application: Say goodbye to mountains of paperwork and enjoy a smooth online process.
  • Lifetime validity: Register once, export forever! No need for constant renewals.
  • Government benefits: Unlock subsidies and special schemes designed to support Indian exporters.
  • Legal and legit: Conduct your cross-border transactions with confidence and transparency.

How to start an export business from India

After you’ve obtained your IEC, you can seek the benefits of the various schemes laid down by the Federation of Indian Export Organisations (FIEO). Which will help your export, import journey.

Once you have an IEC, you're closer to your dream of exporting from India. You can take your business to international customers across the globe just staying at home.

Jodaro helps brands grow by establishing a global presence for them using e-commerce and D2C channels. We eliminate the complexities of paperwork, logistics, financing, customer support, marketing and compliance. We help you reach millions of potential buyers worldwide, no middlemen, no hassle which lets you earn higher margins and gain a bigger market share.

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