Process to import Pharmaceutical products


How to import Pharmaceutical products? 

In this post, a basic knowledge on how to import Pharmaceutical products is explained. This information is to enlighten importers; a general idea to import Pharmaceutical products goods from overseas countries applicable to almost all countries worldwide. Once after reading this post about import procedures and import customs clearance procedures, you will have basic information about the procedures and formalities on how to import various products from foreign countries. Some of the items under this category are prohibited or restricted in some countries. If you are importing any commodity, you need to obtain accurate information from concerned government departments of importing country, as the details given in this post provides only a common idea about import of Pharmaceutical products.

30 PHARMACEUTICAL ProductsDifferent countries may have their own requirements to import Pharmaceutical products although most of the procedures and formalities are same in all countries after globalization of trade by General Agreement on Tariff and Trade, GATT. More trade liberalization is expected in near future for WTO countries through Trade Facilitation Agreement TFA likely to be introduced within a couple of years.


Government registration as importer

In most of countries, government registration is required to become an importer in the country who only can act as an importer. Foreign Trade government office of respective country is responsible to issue such authorization to become an importer. For example in India, IEC number (Import Export Code Number) is obtained from the office of Director General of Foreign Trade office to operate as an importer and exporter in India. This process to become an importer is a onetime process, but renewal may be required as per the terms and conditions of such foreign trade office of a country. Nowadays, in most of the countries, the information on such registration for importer – exporter is linked with customs location and reserve bank, as process of imports and exports are online digitalized. So the importers of Pharmaceutical products is also required to contact concerned government agencies of their importing country to verify whether such onetime registration is necessary or not.


What are the special requirements to import Pharmaceutical products

The process and formalities to import Pharmaceutical products may differ from one another and in country to country. Also different procedures and formalities to import each items might be different under import of Pharmaceutical products. However, some of the common requirements to import Pharmaceutical products in major countries are explained below:



Certificate from wild life protection board of importing country to import Pharmaceutical products

Necessary certificate from Wild life protection department of importing country is required to import some of the items under pharmaceutical products.


NOC from Drug controller to import Pharmaceutical products

Some countries insist no objection certificate from Drug controller of importing country to import some of the special items under pharmaceutical products, drugs, medicines, cosmetics etc.

Certificate of Origin to import Pharmaceutical products

The source of origin of imported Pharmaceutical products is required in almost all countries. So a certificate of origin issued by necessary approved authorities at exporting country is required to import Pharmaceutical products. Certificate of origin helps to determine origin of imported goods to avail exemption on import duties and taxes. Different unilateral, multilateral and bilateral agreement between countries also allows imports and exports with exemption of import duties where in Certificate of Origin is the primary proof on country of origin of importing goods under Pharmaceutical products.


Procedures to import Pharmaceutical products

The importer and supplier mutually agree terms and conditions about import sale prior to actual shipment of imports. Pricing, quality specifications, terms of payment, terms delivery, and mode of transport and other terms and conditions are agreed and mentioned in purchase order when importing Pharmaceutical products.

As you know, under any importation of goods, necessary import documentation and customs clearance procedures at importing country have to be completed either importer’s customs broker or importer directly as per foreign trade policy of respective importing country. For importing Pharmaceutical products also, import entry documents along with carrier’s document (Bill of Lading /Airway bill), commercial invoice, packing list, certificate of origin and other required documents are filed and necessary import procedures are completed to take delivery of imported goods under Pharmaceutical products. Nowadays, necessary information is filed online and produces required documents at the time of inspection, assessment or delivery of import of goods at destination customs location.


The international partners of countries share quality measures each other and exempt from multiple inspection on same products both for export and import. However, as per the policy of most of the developed countries import of goods from Least Developed Countries (LDC) need to be certified by authorized agencies before export. So when importing Pharmaceutical products the details of such information can be obtained from necessary government agencies of importing country.


Prior notice to importing country.

In some countries, prior notice regarding import of Pharmaceutical products has to be filed before arrival of goods in entry port of importing country.

In this article, the documentation, process and formalities to import Pharmaceutical products are explained. As explained above, this information is generally applicable for all countries. These details on how to import Pharmaceutical products are given to provide a basic idea to bring Pharmaceutical products from foreign country. Specific requirements for each importing country need to be followed by importers and exporters of Pharmaceutical products.


I hope, the above information helps you in gaining basic knowledge on documentation, procedures and formalities in importation of Pharmaceutical produ

The above post commonly explains on the questions given under about import guidelines of pharmaceutical products. These products fall under chapter 30 of hs code. Please contact authorized government agencies of importing country for accurate information on importation procedures and formalities:

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More Legal Services : I need your valuable assistance for my Client , Details mentioned herein: Status of Client : Private Limited Work details : Export of Medicine from India to outside India. Assistance require : 1. What are the legal compliance require 2. Is any Drug Licenses or Registration require 3. Any other approval or consent require.

Anurag Jain : I am Anurag jain From Atomexports . First of all sir i am big supporters of your , what you are doing for new people like myself really appreciated . I am new in this feild i am dealing in pharmaceuticals products and ore . I have a query from turkey regarding supply of bauxite ore non calcined 50000mt per month they have asked me to quote fob price . problem is that i have suppliers ready but no able to find out the taxes Percentage and how it would be calculated . Like Government Levis, Cess , And export Duty . kindly guide me with links or in any way i can find the information

Deepali Kadam : It was very helpful going through your information on Import and Export.But still i would like to know how is the commission or duties imposed on the product. and where should i contact to know information over it.I am importing a surgical product .

Andrew Dunne : I am a UK resident and will be visiting India in June (I arrive in Delhi on June 4th). Before I leave I want to ship about 6 KG of Shilajit (Ayurvedic resin) back to the UK for commercial sale. I have spoken with DHL and they say that I can't post Ayurvedic substances that aren't 'labelled' or 'branded' to the UK (the substance is a pure hard resin) as customs won't allow this. Now I know that it is definitely somehow possible as I order my shilajit for personal use from the USA and I know that the guy I purchase from brings his Shilajit from India to the US in bulk. His website is below and I'm certain that he ships his Shilajit to the US from India completely legally: Also, looking at the export data here, it shows that certainly Shilajit is exported from India to many western countries: I have emailed many freight forwarding companies and customs clearance companies and no-one has got back to me! I'm kind of getting to my wits end here. Can you offer me some advice please?

Abhishek: It was very helpful going through this post. I want to export lifesaving drugs like anticancer vaccines from India. I have few doubts regarding this, kindly guide me with links or in any way i can find the information...

swapnil siddha : I am interested in exporting medicines to different areas or countries, but as of now I have no idea how to go about it, Very soon I will get my medicine manufactured under my brand name.

Tonsy Varghese : My name is Tonsy Varghese and from kerala and located in Cairo. I have gone through your article in internet. We are facing some problems in import license, we would like to discuss with you.

krunal thakre : Sir i have sources from where i can get small shipment order i.e., retail export for medicines.but the problem is that i don't have drug licence. Also if i am doing adc for such a small shipment how can i earn the profits maximum of the profit will go down because of shipment procedure. I hope you will definitely have the solution for this.

Nanak Mohan: I am a Pharma manufacturer located in Baddi Himachal Pradesh. My company deals with almost all kind of allopathic medicines. I want to expand my business to other countries. I read your article in" How to export and import". The article is worth a read.


LiHeK: We are a distributor of HERBAL MEDICINE (Ayurvedic Product) in Ahmedabad city. We have about a 40-45 product of HERBAL MEDICINE. Now we planning to export our product. Will you help us to export?

BHAVIK PATEL : I am Bhavik Patel from Gujarat. I am reading your blog regularly. I got almost all solutions for my confusion and queries regarding export. I have little confusion. Right now I am Area manager in Indian pharma company from last 5 years and my elder brother has business of color dyes (has only local marketing) Now I want to start export business so what is your advice? Can I start my own business for pharma products?

mot set : I am SETHUMAHADEVAN from Kerala. I am a retail chemist doing both vet and human. Sir i am interest in export medicine but the thing is that I have no idea about it. Sir is it possible to me export the medicine because i am not a manufacture.

favaz ad : I am Favaz and I would like to take your time for introduce our business, and we have got some inquiry regarding export medicines to Kazakhstan. Our firm, pharmaceutical distributors and Life Care Distributors. We are active in the pharma distribution business since the year 2006.We are already doing the other business in middle east countries like Qatar and UAE. As our expansion plans currently we are looking to export medicines to Eurasian countries. Initially we are looking to export Kazakhstan . If you are interested in this proposal please revert me back with your product catalog and your requirements with the terms and conditions. We are looking forward to an early association with your company for a mutually fruitful business relationship. I am looking for your reply @ the earliest. Kind Regards,

Musa. : Hope you are doing well. My name is Musa and live in US and own a private independent pharmacy. I would like to open a pharmacy in Lahore, Pakistan (I was born in Lahore). I was just going through your website, tremdous work by the way. I was wondering if you can guide me on how, if I open a pharmacy in Pakistan, can I export medicine from USA. Any guidance would be greatly appreciated.

Samson once more :

veerappan: we require a licensed agent in Kochi to export an ayurvedic product to Singapore. The manufacturer does not export themselves. this will be ongoing. Regards

Sharjoon : I would like to import veterinary drugs for Exoctic birds and animals from Europe the company is ready to give me a distribution and I have IEC code , GST and registered company if you could please guide me how to obtain the drug license and proceed further will be appreciated.

mallik: I am willing to start up an exporting/trading business of Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (API) .i.e. Pharmaceutical raw material. I would like to know what are the requirements to export API. Also I would like to know what are the requirements to register such a company in India.

rajesh: I would like to import nutraceuticals and pharmaceutical products from Brazil. Would like to know if I would be able to get any benefits in customs duty based of FTA.

khan: I am distributers of medicine. I would like to know to about to exports medicine to other countries means BHUTAN. Now a day I am facing so many problem regarding exporting my goods. Before lockdown there was no any problem for exports medicine to Bhutan. What kind of documents do I need?. I have a Drug Distribution certificate,IES certificate and stocks certificate. So what should I do?and what kind of documents need to transfer my medicine to Bhutan.

khan: I am distributers of medicine. I would like to know to about to exports medicine to other countries means BHUTAN. Now a day I am facing so many problem regarding exporting my goods. Before lockdown there was no any problem for exports medicine to Bhutan. What kind of documents do I need?. I have a Drug Distribution certificate,IES certificate and stocks certificate. So what should I do?and what kind of documents need to transfer my medicine to Bhutan.

serkan: A pharmaceutical wholesaler licensed by Turkish Ministry of Health, located in Mersin- Turkey. We are exporters of wide range of branded pharmaceuticals,of the multinational companies, generic products , and Turkish pharmaceutical companies. We supply pharmacies, hospitals and other warehouses locally and worldwide. Also a member of Mersin Chamber of Commerce and Mediterranean Exporters' Association. Looking forward to starting cooperation with your esteemed company and achievement mutual success at both ends.

rajeev: We want to import few supplies and regarding that need you help , can you guide us regarding few queries, 1- Can we import the given supplies in the Name of daivem Clinic 2 - What is the custom charges for that 4 - What is your charges for helping us 5 - How can we receive the delivery etc PFB few details of the supplies that we want import, please guide A)DHEA 10mg with Methocel (100 capsules) B) Testosterone 100mg cream (50ml) C)Magnesium Glycinate 300mg + Melatonin 3mg with Methocel (100 capsules)

rajendra: We have developed a Hemo Dialysis Equipment, a first by an Indian company . Our design office is in Bengaluru and contract manufacturing facility at Mysore. The product is now under pilot production and going for commercial production some time in May. I was going thru one of your articles on custom duty exemptions for medical products and thought you would help in sharing some of our concerns We are currently importing some critical components for our product build . These include Blood pump Solenoid valves Gear pumps Piston pumps Blood sensor Air bubble sensor Filters Raw material for Hydraulic components 10" Tablets Pressure sensors The above parts attract customs duty from 7.5% to 10% with an additional cess of 10%. This automatically escalates the cost by a significant margin. I understand there is a possibility of exempting these components from basic customs duty if they are used in manufacturing of life saving equipment like "Dialysis Machine". However , we do not have authentic information or confirmation regarding this. Could you help in answering following queries? 1 First and foremost - is there a provision to exempt customs duty fully or partially for components used in manufacturing of Life saving medical equipment? 2 If all parts are not exempted , what are the parts covered in the list? 3 Since we are are first company to locally manufacture this equipment, can we include all these parts in the exempt list? 4 If policy exists, what is the procedure to avail this duty exemption? These are very critical issues to be addressed for moving into local manufacturing and to offer a Dialysis Machine at an affordable cost to the Indian Market Please let me know your inputs Thanks and looking forward to your quick response

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