Import License and IEC Code Number.


MODES OF INTERNATIONAL TRADE

Introduction

While the majority of the goods are freely importable, the Exim Policy (2007) of India prohibits import of certain categories of products as well as conditional import of certain items. In such a situation it becomes important for the importer to have an import license issued by the issuing authorities of the Government of India.

Import License Issuing Authority
In India, Import License is issued by the Director General of Foreign Trade. DGFT Delhi office is situated in Udyog Bhawan, New Delhi 110011.

Validity of Import License

Import Licenses are valid for 24 months for capital goods and 18 months for raw materials components, consumable and spares, with the license term renewable.

Sample of Import License

A typical sample of import license consists of two copies-
ForeignExchange Control Copy: To be utilised for effecting remittance to foreign seller or for opening letter of credit
Customs Copy: To be utilised for presenting to Customs authority enabling them to clear the goods. In the absence of custom copy, import will be declared as an unauthorised import, liable for confiscation and or penalty.

Categories of Import

All types of imported goods come under the following four categories:

  • Freely importable items: Most capital goods fall into this category. Any product declared as Freely Importable Item does not require import licenses.

  • Licensed Imports: There are number of goods, which can only be importer under an import license. This category includes several broad product groups that are classified as consumer goods; precious and semi-precious stones; products related to safety and security; seeds, plants and animals; some insecticides, pharmaceuticals and chemicals; some electronically items; several items reserved for production by the small-scale sector; and 17 miscellaneous or special-category items.

  • Canalised Items: There are certain canalised  items that can only be importer in India through specified channels or government agencies. These include petroleum products (to be imported only by the Indian Oil Corporation); nitrogenous phosphatic, potassic and complex chemical fertilizers (by the Minerals and Metals Trading Corporation) vitamin- A drugs (by the State Trading Corporation); oils and seeds (by the State Trading Corporation and Hindustan Vegetable Oils); and cereals (by the Food Corporation of India). 

  • Prohibited items: Only four items-tallow fat, animal rennet, wild animals and unprocessed ivory-are completely banned from importation.

Category of Importer
On the basis of product to be imported and its target buyer, importers categories are divided into three groups for the purpose of obtaining import licensing:

  1. Actual Users- An actual user applies for and receives a license to import of any item for personal use rather than for business or trade purpose.

  2. Registered exporters; defined as those who have a valid registration certificate issued by an export promotion council, commodity board or other registered authority designated by the Government for purposes of export-promotion.

  3. Others.

The two types of actual user license are:

  1. General Licenses : This license can be used for the imports of goods from all countries, except those countries from which imports are prohibited;

  2. Specific Licenses: This license can only be used for imports from a specific country.

Custom Inspection

Any violation in the import license is usually scanned by the custom officials of the custom department. Customer inspector and other custom officials have authority to inspect and evaluate the goods to be imported. It’s a part of their job to determine whether imports conform to the description in the import License or not. Custom official even have right to charge fines and penalties if any violation in the import license is found to be done by the importer.

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What is New?
Date: 17-04-2014
Customs Notification No 32/2014 (NT)
Rate of exchange of conversion of each of the foreign currency with effect from 17th April, 2014

Date: 16-04-2014
RBI/2013-14/566 A.P. (DIR Series) Circular No. 123
Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in Limited Liability Partnership (LLP)

Date: 15-04-2014
DGFT Public Notice No.58/(RE 2013)/2009-14
Amendment in the date of effect for implementation of Self-certification regarding compliance of bar-coding requirements on secondary and tertiary level packaging on export consignment of pharmaceuticals and drugs.

Date: 15-04-2014
Customs Notification No 31/2014 (NT)
Amends Notification No. 36/2001-Customs (N.T.), dated the 3rd August, 2001

Date: 11-04-2014
Customs Notification No. 15/2014-Customs (ADD
Seeks to levy provisional anti-dumping duty on imports of cast aluminium alloy wheels or alloy road wheels used in motor vehicles when imported into India from People’s Republic of China, Korea RP and Thailand for a period of 6 months

Date: 10-04-2014
RBI/2013-14/560 A.P. (DIR Series) Circular No.121
External Commercial Borrowing (ECB) Policy – Review of all-in-cost ceiling

Date: 10-04-2014
RBI/2013-14/561 A.P. (DIR Series) Circular No.122
Trade Credits for Imports into India – Review of all-in-cost ceiling

Date: 10-04-2014
RBI/2013-14/559 A.P. (DIR Series) Circular No.120
Rupee Drawing Arrangement – ‘Direct to Account’ Facility

Date: 09-04-2014
DGFT Public Notice No.57/(RE 2013)/2009-14
Procedure for export of pulses to Republic of Maldives

Date: 07-04-2014
CUSTOMS INSTRUCTION
Manual filing and processing of Bills of Entry / Shipping Bills – stringent checks required to prevent misuse


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