An exclusive 10-digit code called the Importer-Exporter Code (IEC) is required for importing and exporting goods from India. It is issued by the Director General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) and remains valid throughout the entire lifespan of a business. Obtaining an IEC not only safeguards legal rights but also provides opportunities for businesses to expand their reach and explore new markets. However, when business owners contemplate managing two distinct enterprises simultaneously, an intriguing question arises: Is one IEC code for two businesses possible?
In this article, we will delve into the peculiarities of the IEC and examine the potential benefits and implications associated with using one IEC code for two businesses.
Import-Export Code Registration Process
- To submit an online application, you need to complete the Aayaat Niryaat Form 2A. Alternatively, if you prefer to register offline, you must create an application in the same format and submit the completed form to the appropriate Regional office of the DGFT.
- The next step involves providing all the necessary documentation, including bank information and address evidence, to establish the identity of the business owner.
- Once you have duly filled out the form, you need to submit the document to the DGFT and affix your digital signature certificate to it. You will be required to pay the registration fee.
- Upon acceptance of your application, you will receive the IEC code digitally.
Documents Required for IEC Registration
- PAN card of each director or proprietor
- Address evidence in the form of a rental agreement/sale deed/electricity bills of the registered office.
- Cancelled cheque of the current account.
Please ensure that the utility bill provided as proof of address is the most recent one.
Utilising One IEC Code for Two Businesses
If a business owner who owns a proprietorship wants to establish a new branch or entity but has already registered with the Import-Export Code (IEC) for the prior entity, they do not need to apply for a second registration. The new entity can be established and begin operating using the existing IE Code. This is because the second registration would be invalid, as the first IEC registration has already been linked to the proprietorship firm’s or owner’s PAN card.
If a person submits more than one IEC application using the same PAN, only one registration will be considered genuine. In such a situation, the applicant must cancel the second registration. It is important to note that a single PAN can only have one IEC code issued against it. If more than one IEC is issued against the same PAN, the IEC code has to be Suo moto deactivated by the authorities.
In another scenario, if an individual is starting a new business registered with a separate PAN, it is now possible to obtain an Importer-Exporter Code (IEC). In this case, a person can use more than one IEC. This has been possible only because the individual used a separate PAN that hasn’t been registered with any other businesses.
To summarize, if a business owner already has an Import-Export Code (IEC) registered with a proprietorship, they can establish a new branch or entity without applying for a second registration. If a person wishes to obtain multiple IECs, he can use a separate PAN that hasn’t been registered with any business.
It is essential to conduct a precise assessment to determine whether one IEC code can be used for two distinct businesses. While the concept of utilizing one IEC code for two businesses offers notable advantages, entrepreneurs must undertake thorough research, seek expert advice, and evaluate the legal framework before drawing conclusions aligned with their business objectives. At Taxxinn, our team will assist you in applying for an IE code and take you through a seamless process.