Importer Exporter Code (IEC), is 10-digit code, however, after implementation of GST it is the PAN of the entity, with a lifetime validity issued by the Director General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) to the importer/exporter in terms of Para 2.12 of Foreign Trade Policy(FTP 2015-20) read with Para 2.08 of Handbook of Procedure.
DGFT has brought various initiatives to simplify the process paperless as the initiative of Digital India. Therefore, DGFT launched its digital platform for roll out of DGFT Modules to digital mode as a part of Digital India vide Trade Notice (TN) No.16/2020-21 Dated 25.06.2020 w.e.f. 13.07.2020, according to this (TN) all the existing IEC holders should link their IEC with the new website of DGFT.
1. Phase wise roll out of DGFT Modules to digital mode;
2. Authentication through Digital signature (DSC)/Aadhaar based e-sign authentication;
3. Digital delivery of IEC related services;
4. Paperless Services
5. Digital, efficient and transparent services to the exporters and importers
Phase wise rollout of DGFT modules for providing the digital services in a phased manner.Following were the phases of DGFT modules –
1. In First Phase –
i. Linking of IEC with new website with Digital signature (DSC)/Aadhaar based e-sign;
ii. Services related to IEC issuance, modification, amendments;
iii. Chatbot (a virtual assistant) “Ask VAHE!” for the users queries, etc.
2. In Next Phase – Other online modules relating to –
i. Advance authorization;
ii. EPCG and
iii. exports obligation discharge certificate;
iv. Chatbot (a virtual assistant) for the users queries;
Requisites for linking/obtaining of IEC with DGFT portal as under –
For obtaining new IEC or modifying or linking of existing IEC, importer/exporter should register with the DGFT website(hereinafter referred as ‘Register user’) with the following details –
1. Authorised signatory full Name (First Name & Last Name)
2. Email ID(for OTP):
3. Mobile No. (for OTP):
4. Pin Code
8. Organization DSC for applying for IEC authentication;
9. Aadhar linked with Phone no. for Aadhaar e-sign of the proprietors/directors/partners/Karta etc. as mentioned on their IEC;
10. Aadhar details matching with PAN for e-sign authentication;
Process for linking of IEC as under –
1. Registering with DGFT with basic details Name, Mobile No. & Email ID(for OTP);
2. Providing User Name(E-mail ID) & Password;
3. Choosing the option ‘IEC Apply’ or ‘Link IEC’;
4. Linking your profile to IEC;
5. Installing DSC drivers/Embridge;
6. Submission with Sign either with Digital signature (DSC) or Aadhaar e-sign;
While linking the IEC with DGFT authentication has to be made with DSC or Aadhar e-sign, however, for modification there could be requirement of DSC.It has to be noted that DSC for registering with IEC is different and DSC for availing the benefits under FTP is different as given below –
1. Organization DSC – Required Class-II*/III DSC for applying for IEC or modifying the IEC;
i. Organisation Name should appear in the IEC should match with DSC;
ii. Authentication with Aadhaar e-sign – Details containing in the Aadhar should match with PAN which validates and process the e-sign.
2. DGFT DSC –To avail the benefits under MEIS/SEIS DGFT DSC would be required.
* Note: With effect from 01.01.2021 all Class II DSCs would be discontinued and thereafter should obtain Class III ie. Class II DSCs could be replaced by Class III for all purposes, including GST, Income Tax, RoC filing, PF, Tenders, etc.
Procedure for linking of IEC
-Logon to DGFT website via link https://dgft.gov.in/.
-Proceed with registration processby clicking on Login > Register> Register as “Importer/Exporter”
-After registration, Go to My Dashboard→Importer Exporter Code ( IEC )→Apply for IEC.
Disclaimer: This is purely for educational/information purpose, please refer the respective policy, advise from professional before proceeding in this regard.