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Import Procedures

·        How to Import -Introduction

·         Pricinpal Law & Import Export Policy

·        Registration with Regional Licencing Authority and obtaining IEC Code

·        Licence Application Fees

·         Validity of Licence

·         Conditions of Licence

·         Imports under Special Scheme for Exporters

·        Selecting the Overseas Supplier

·         Finalising the Terms of Import

·         Payment against Imports

·         Letter of Credit

·        Scrutiny of documents and Retirement of Documents

·        Mode of payment & Time limit for Import Remittance

·         Customs Clearance of imported goods

·         Classification of Customs tariff and Levy of Customs Duty

·         Warehousing of Imported goods

·        Import by Export of Services

·         Import through Courier

·         Import for personal use

·         Import of Samples

·         Import of Prototype

·         Import of Computer, Computer parts and Computer Software

·         Import of Passenger Baggage


[As governed by the Foreign Trade (Development & Regulation) Act, 1992]

With the globalisation of Indian economy and consequent upon comfortable balance of payment position Government of India has liberalised the Import Policy and practically all Controls on imports have been lifted.Imports may be made freely except to the extent they are regulated by the provisions of Import Policy or by any other law for the time being in force.

Principal Law

Imports in to India are governed by Foreign Trade (Development & Regulation) Act 1992. Under this Act, imports of all goods is Free except for the items regulated by the policy or any other law for the time being in force.In exercise of the powers conferred by the Foreign Trade (Development & Regulation) Act 1992 the Government has issued the following Rules & Order:

Foreign Trade(Regulation)Rules, 1993, which inter alia, provide for grant of special licence, application for grant of licence, fee, conditions for licences, refusal of licence, amendment of licence, suspension of a licence, cancellation of licence, declaration as to the value and quality of imported goods, declaration as to the Importer- Exporter Code number, utilisation of imported goods, provisions regarding making, signing of any declaration/statement or documents, power to enter the premises and inspect, search and seizure of goods, documents, things and conveyance, settlement, confiscation and redemption and confiscation of conveyance.

Foreign Trade (Exemption from Application of Rules in Certain Cases) Order 1993

Notifications under Foreign Trade (Development & Regulation) Act 1992.

Import Export Policy

The present import policy and procedures in respect of various commodities/category of importers, are, inter alia, contained in the following publications issued by the Ministry of Commerce and revised from time to time:

  • Import - Export Policy, 1997-2002 as modified upto 31.03.1999
  • Handbook of Import – Export Procedures(Volume 1), 1997-2002 as modified upto 31.03.2000.
  • Handbook of Import – Export Procedures: (Volume 2) Duty Exemption Scheme: Input – Output and Value Addition Norms, 1997-2002.
  • ITC(HS) Classification of Import and Export Items.

Notifications and Circulars

The Import – Export Policy and Procedure books issued by the Government are amended/clarified/ explained by

the Ministry of Commerce from time to time. The types of Notifications/Clarifications/Instructions issued by the Ministry

for this purpose are:

  • Public Notices.
  • Notifications
  • Policy Circulars

Select the commodity/Product you wish to import :

Be aware of the import potential and the commercial viability of the commodity/product.

Check whether the items of your interest fall in the Restricted list of ITC(HS) Classifications of Exports & Imports items.

Prohibited items are not permitted to be imported at all. List of Prohibited items of import are detailed below:

Tallow, Fat or Oils rendered, unrendered or otherwise of any animal origin, animal rennet and wild animals including their parts and products and ivory any part and products, including ivory.

For import of items appearing in Restricted list you need secure import licence.

Third category of items comes under the Canalised list of items. Import of items included in Canalised list are permitted to be imported through Canalising Agencies.

Thus items not appearing in Prohibited list, Restricted list and or in Canalised list can be imported Freely without any import licence. A large number of Consumer goods are freely importable without licence.


Registration with Regional Licensing Authority:

Registration with Regional Licensing Authority is a pre-requisite for import of goods. The Customs will not allow clearance of goods unless:
The importer has obtained IE Code Number from Regional Licensing Authority. However, no such registration is necessary for persons importing goods from/ to Nepal provided Value of a single Consignment does not exceed Rs. 25000/=

Obtaining IEC Code Number
An application for grant of IEC Code Number should be made in the prescribed proforma given at Appendix 3.I. The application duly signed by the applicant should be supported by the following documents:

  • Bank Receipt (in duplicate)/demand draft for payment of the fee of Rs.1000/-
  • Certificate from the Banker of the applicant firm as per Annexure1 to the form.
  • Two copies of passport size photographs of the applicant duly attested by the banker of the applicant.
  • A copy of Permanent Account Number issued by Income Tax Authorities, if PAN has not been allotted, a copy of the letter of legal authority may be furnished.
  • If there is any non-resident interest in the firm and NRI investment is to be made with repatriable benefits, full particulars thereof along with a photocopy of RBI’s approval. If there is NRI investment without repatriation benefit, a simple declaration indicating whether it is held with the general/specific permission of the RBI on the letter head of the firm should be furnished. In case of specific approval, a copy may also be furnished.
  • Declaration by the applicant that the proprietors/partners/directors of the applicant firm/company, as the case may be, are not associated as proprietor/partners/directors with any other firm/company the IEC No. is allotted with a condition that be can export only with the prior approval of the RBI.
  • Profile of the exporter/importer in a given format at Appendix 3.II.

The Registered Office or HO or Branch Office (duly authorized by the HO in this behalf) should apply for allotment of IEC No. However, only one IEC no. is allotted to a company and the same is valid for all its branches/offices/units. The applilcation for grant of IEC No. should be made to the Regional Licensing Authority concerned as specified in Appendix 3.III.

The application fee shall be deposited by way of deposit in an authorized branch of Central Bank of India indicating the head of Account 1453 Foreign Trade and Export Promotion Minor Head 102. Import Licence Application Fee.

The IEC No. is likely to be granted within 3 days of the receipt of the complete application and requisite documents.

How to fill up IEC application:

·         Application form should be made in the prescribed form in duplicate along with the above enclosures, mentioned against serial 1 to 8 of above paragraph, also in duplicate.

·         The form should be neatly typed/handwritten in bold capital letters only.

·         Each copy of the application form should be signed in ink by the authorised person.

·         Items of information relevant to applicant should only be filled and remaining items may be marked not applicable.

·         Modification of particulars of the applicant should also be furnished on this form by filling the relevant items.

However, in case an IE Code holder no longer wishes to operate under the allotted code number, the matter should be brought under the notice of the Regional Licensing Authority to make the Code number inoperative.

Import Policy:

For items not mentioned as Prohibited, Restricted or Canalised List for import in ITC(HS) Classification of Export and Import items; import of such items are freely permitted. There is no need to obtain any license or permission for importing such goods. The ITC(HS) Classification of Export and Import items contains 99 chapters and in each chapter there are column heading covering Exim Code, items description, policy and nature or restriction. The information related to import policy for any item can be obtained from our site under Customs Duty Calculator Schedule.