In the International Trade import and export of high value, low weight goods through Courier by air has come into fashion for quite some time. For regulating the said import and export, the Government of India had framed Courier Imports (Clearance) Regulation 1995.

At present, the courier clearances are allowed both under manual mode as well as electronic mode. The courier clearance under the manual mode is governed by Courier Import & Export (Clearance) Regulations, 1998, & courier clearance under the electronic mode is governed by Courier Import & Export (Electronic Declaration & Processing) Regulations, 2010.

All types of goods can be sent through the courier mode into India and out of India except few articles. The goods which are prohibited for import through courier are:

  • Animals & parts thereof or plants & parts thereof,
  • perishable goods,
  • publications containing maps showing incorrect boundaries of India,
  • Gold or silver in any form,
  • Precious and semi-precious stones & Studded jewelry.

Export: As in the case of imports, all goods are allowed to be exported through courier except for certain excluded categories. The goods not allowed to be exported through courier mode are those which attract any duty on exports or those exported under export promotion schemes, such as Drawback, DEPB, DEEC, EPCG etc. Other exclusions include goods, where the value of the consignment is above Rs.25,000/- and transaction in foreign exchange, is involved.

The facility of imports and exports through courier mode is allowed to only to those courier companies which are registered by the Customs. These courier companies are called “Authorized Couriers”.

At present, the facility of courier clearance is available at Customs airports in Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai, Calcutta, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad, Jaipur, and Land Customs Stations at Petrapole and Gojadanga. Under the scheme, the courier goods are cleared through a fast track mode on the observance of simple formalities by courier companies.

Examination of parcels is kept to the minimum and clearance is allowed on the basis of selective scrutiny of documents. The duty, where leviable, is paid by the courier company on behalf of importers/exporters before taking delivery of the parcels.

The weight limit for courier/express material (individual packages) for imports and exports is fixed at 70 kg.