Licensing/ Registration of Agricultural products in India. Agriculture with its allied sectors, in India has made a lot of progress since independence. It also contributes a significant figure to the GDP. Agriculture export has increased with special efforts of government of India, making India one of the leading exporters of food grain in international market.
All the businesses which aim to do international trading of agricultural products have to register with a regional licensing authority that provides them with an Import Export Code (IEC) number. Custom officials will not permit clearance of goods unless the importer gets an Import Export Code (IEC) number from the regional licensing authority. Director General of Foreign trade is the authority that provides them with an Import Export Code (IEC) number.
Major agricultural products have to go through quality control and pre-shipment inspections before export under the Export (Quality Control and Inspection) Act, 1963. However, products that have an ISI Certification Mark or Agmark do not need to be inspected by any agency. All goods should be labelled, packaged, packed and marked before export.
Imports to India are governed by the Foreign Trade (Development and Regulation) Act 1992. Under this Act, imports of all goods are free except for the items regulated by the policy or any other law in force. The items regulated by this policy is classified as prohibited list which cannot be imported. For import of items that appear in the ‘Restricted’ list one need to secure an import License whereas the items that are enumerated in the canalized list are permitted to be imported through canalizing Agencies. All other products can be freely imported.
Import of agricultural product was a concern for the manufactures as there was no settled procedure for it. Now we have import procedure for most of the agricultural products, fisheries sector, horticulture, livestock products. There are different departments / agencies for development of industries, fixing of standards and specifications relating to the scheduled products for export, registration of members, licensing, etc.