Which Form to Use When Modifying the IEC 

Last Updated at: Feb 22, 2021
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IEC Modification

The Importer Exporter Code (IEC) is an important document for starting your export or import business. The general foreign trade laws in India are aligned to allow the greatest flexibility and ease in the granting of this basic license. It is a 10-digit number granted on the basis of the Permanent Account Number (PAN) of an individual or firm. This mandatory code can be obtained by way of an online application to the Director-General of Foreign Trade, Department of Commerce, Government of India. In this post, we highlight how you can do modifying the IEC existing number. 

Why should your IEC details be correctly updated?

  • The IEC number serves as an important document of international trade. 
  • As an importer or exporter, this document will be in need by the shipping company that you engage for international transactions. Any inconsistency in details such as names, registered address, PAN, details of partners, etc., can have serious repercussions. 
  • Similarly, online shopping websites may require this detail for their internal compliance with the government of the country. 
  • Banks that act as the intermediary between a buyer and seller located in different countries may also require you to quote your IEC number. They may reject transactions due to mismatches in details. 
  • Customs and port authorities would also require an IEC number for clearance and documentation purposes. Your shipment may get stuck or take longer to reach if your IEC number is not correctly updated with the authorities. 
  • FSSAI has also made it mandatory to obtain IEC for running an import or export business of food products. Thus, your license may render invalid due to inconsistencies in the data updated on the DGFT. 

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Which form should be used for IEC modification?

As per the new DGFT details – Form ANF 2A is required for modifying your existing IEC. This can be accessed by following the link – http://dgftcom.nic.in/exim/2000/IEC-REVISED.pdf

Changing your numbered IEC to a PAN-based IEC

After amendments to the GST Act, the PAN is to link with the importer-exporter certificate. Thus, exporters who have a numeric IEC granted to them under the old regime can apply for modifications. This would link their PAN with the IEC. 

Step 1 – You will have to link your IEC number using the ‘Link IEC’ tab available on the DGFT website at – 

Step 2 – From here, click on the ‘Apply for Modification’ tab. Here, mention the correct details of modification and enter existing details, as required in Form ANF. 

Step 3 – After the request successfully submits, you will need to connect with your appropriate regional authority for approval of the request. 

Making other amendments to your IEC application

Often, it may happen that your phone number or email ID linked with the existing account changes. You may also decide to edit your firm name, and change it to a name different from what displays on your IEC certificate. The name of a firm may also change altogether from what is initially register with the Registrar of Companies. In all such cases, you would have to apply for a modification to your existing IEC certificate.

The process to change such details on the IEC portal – 

Step 1

Log on to the DGFT website with your existing username and password. Now, click on the ‘services’ tab from the menu bar and choose ‘IEC’. From this, choose the ‘Online IEC Application’ tab. 

Step 2

On this tab – click on ‘Modify IEC’. Upload proofs of the documents through which the change has evidence. For minor changes like email address, no proof is in need. Please note that the IEC application system only accepts PDF format with files up to 5 MB only. 

Step 3

Click on the ‘Fee Payment’ and submit the application for modification. For an application for modification within 90 days of the grant of certificate, no fee is payable. However, beyond this period a nominal charge becomes payable for each modification. 

The certificate details would match and may grant within 24 hours. 

Frequently asked questions

1. Will I have to apply for renewal of my IEC number?

No, There is lifetime validity for an IEC number once granted. It does not expire and there is no need for any periodic renewal. Moreover, an IEC number allotting to an applicant shall be valid for all its branches/divisions/units/factories. 

2. How long does it take to update or modify an IEC certificate?

The process is almost instantaneous for most changes. However, effecting some changes (such as name change that doesn’t match with the name of the firm in the Ministry of Corporate Affairs’ records) would need additional time. 

3. What if the modification submitted is not reflecting immediately on the portal

If the status of your request is ‘In Process’, then the request needs further approval by the regional authority. Please connect with the concerned RA (mentioned on your IEC) for further approval. Once the RA approves the request, the changes will reflect in the IEC Profile. You may also seek more details of your specific application on the official helpline number 1800-111-550 from 9:00 am to 6:00 pm, Monday to Saturday.