Import-Export Code not updated after 2005 to be de-activated from October 6: DGFT

To be aware of the actual number of traders in the country, the Commerce Ministry announced deactivation of all importer-exporter codes (IECs) that have not been updated after January 2005 with effect from October 6 this year.

The Importer -Exporter Code (IEC) is a key business identification number that is mandatory for exports or imports. Without the IEC number granted by the DGFT, no individual shall make any import or export.

On August 8 this year, the Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) was mandated all IEC holders to ensure that details in their IEC are updated electronically every year during the April-June period. “All IECs which have not been updated after January 1, 2005, shall be deactivated with effect from October 6, 2021,” according to a trade notice of the DGFT.

The trade notice further stated, that this is the final opportunity of the concerned IEC holders to update their IEC in this interim period till October 5, failing which the given code would be de-activated from October 6.

“Any IEC where an online updation application has been submitted but is pending with the DGFT RA (regional authority) for approval shall be excluded from the deactivation list,” it added.

As far as re-activation of the code after October 6 is concerned, the IEC holder has to navigate to the DGFT website and update their IEC online.

“Upon successful update the given IEC shall be activated again and transmitted accordingly to the customs system with the updated status,” the notice said.

With de-activation of IECs the base load of the directorate will be reduced and the actual number of real exporters and importers in the country will be known.

The nature of the firm obtaining an IEC includes proprietorship, partnership, LLP, limited company, trust, and society. After the introduction of GST (Goods and Services Tax), IEC number is the same as the PAN of the firm.

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