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ISO 3166-1 alpha-2
code In communication Communication (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language A classical language is a language A language is a structured system of communication Communication (from Latin ''communicare'', mean ...

code
s are two-letter
country code Country codes are short alphabetic or numeric geographical Geography (from Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country lo ...
s defined in
ISO 3166-1 ISO 3166-1 (''Codes for the representation of names of countries and their subdivisions – Part 1: Country codes'') is a standard defining codes for the names of countries, dependent territories, and special areas of geographical interest. It i ...
, part of the
ISO 3166 ISO 3166 is a standard Standard may refer to: Flags * Colours, standards and guidons * Standard (flag), a type of flag used for personal identification Norm, convention or requirement * Standard (metrology), an object that bears a defined ...
standard Standard may refer to: Flags * Colours, standards and guidons * Standard (flag), a type of flag used for personal identification Norm, convention or requirement * Standard (metrology), an object that bears a defined relationship to a unit of ...
published by the
International Organization for Standardization The International Organization for Standardization (ISO ) is an international standard An international standard is a technical standard A technical standard is an established norm Norm, the Norm or NORM may refer to: In academic discipline ...
(ISO), to represent
countries A country is a distinct territorial body or political entity A polity is an identifiable political entity—any group of people who have a collective identity, who are organized by some form of Institutionalisation, institutionalized social ...

countries
,
dependent territories A dependent territory, dependent area, or dependency is a territory that does not possess full political independence upright=1.0, Pedro I of Brazil, Pedro surrounded by a crowd in São Paulo after breaking the news of Independence of Brazi ...
, and special areas of geographical interest. They are the most widely used of the country codes published by ISO (the others being alpha-3 and numeric), and are used most prominently for the
Internet The Internet (or internet) is the global system of interconnected computer networks that uses the Internet protocol suite (TCP/IP) to communicate between networks and devices. It is a ''internetworking, network of networks'' that consist ...

Internet
's
country code top-level domain A country code top-level domain (ccTLD) is an Internet top-level domain generally used or reserved for a country, sovereign state, or dependent territory identified with a country code. All ASCII ccTLD identifiers are two letters long, and all tw ...
s (with a few exceptions). They are also used as country identifiers extending the postal code when appropriate within the international postal system for paper mail, and has replaced the previous one consisting one-letter codes. They were first included as part of the ISO 3166 standard in its first edition in 1974.


Uses and applications

The ISO 3166-1 alpha-2 codes are used in different environments and are also part of other standards. In some cases they are not perfectly implemented.


Perfect implementations

The ISO 3166-1 alpha-2 codes are used in the following standards:


Imperfect implementations

Starting in 1985, ISO 3166-1 alpha-2 codes have been used in the
Domain Name System The Domain Name System (DNS) is the hierarchical and Decentralised system, decentralized naming system used to identify computers, Internet#Applications_and_services, services, and other resources reachable through the internet or other intern ...

Domain Name System
as
country code top-level domain A country code top-level domain (ccTLD) is an Internet top-level domain generally used or reserved for a country, sovereign state, or dependent territory identified with a country code. All ASCII ccTLD identifiers are two letters long, and all tw ...
s (ccTLDs). The
Internet Assigned Numbers Authority The Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) is a standards organization that oversees global IP address allocation, Autonomous system (Internet), autonomous system number allocation, DNS root zone, root zone management in the Domain Name Sys ...
currently assigns the ccTLDs mostly following the alpha-2 codes, but with a few exceptions. For example, the
United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain,Usage is mixed. The Guardian' and Telegraph' use Britain as a synonym for the United Kingdom. Some prefer to use Britain as shorth ...

United Kingdom
, whose alpha-2 code is , uses
.uk .uk is the Internet The Internet (or internet) is the global system of interconnected computer networks that uses the Internet protocol suite (TCP/IP) to communicate between networks and devices. It is a ''internetworking, network of ne ...
instead of .gb as its ccTLD, as is currently exceptionally reserved in ISO 3166-1 on the request of the United Kingdom. The
WIPO The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO; french: Organisation mondiale de la propriété intellectuelle (OMPI)) is one of the 15 specialized agencies of the United Nations The United Nations (UN) is an intergovernmental o ...
coding standard ST.3 is based on ISO 3166-1 alpha-2 codes, but includes a number of additional codes for international
intellectual property organizationIntellectual property organizations are organizations that are focused on copyright Copyright is a type of intellectual property that gives its owner the exclusive right to make copies of a creative work, usually for a limited time. The creati ...
s, which are currently reserved and not used at the present stage in ISO 3166-1. The
European Commission The European Commission (EC) is the executive branch The executive is the branch of government exercising authority in and holding Moral responsibility, responsibility for the governance of a State (polity), state. The executive executes a ...

European Commission
generally uses ISO 3166-1 alpha-2 codes with two exceptions: (not ) is used to represent
Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, Elláda, ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeastern Europe Southeast Europe or Southeastern Europe () is a geographical subregion A subregion is a part of a larger region In geogr ...

Greece
, and (not ) is used to represent the
United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain,Usage is mixed. The Guardian' and Telegraph' use Britain as a synonym for the United Kingdom. Some prefer to use Britain as shorth ...

United Kingdom
. This notwithstanding, the ''Official Journal of the European Communities'' specified that and be used to represent Greece and United Kingdom respectively. For
VAT A value-added tax (VAT), known in some countries as a goods and services tax (GST), is a type of tax A tax is a compulsory financial charge or some other type of levy imposed on a taxpayer (an individual or legal entity In law, a legal ...
administration purposes, the
European Commission The European Commission (EC) is the executive branch The executive is the branch of government exercising authority in and holding Moral responsibility, responsibility for the governance of a State (polity), state. The executive executes a ...

European Commission
uses and for Greece and the United Kingdom respectively. The
United Nations The United Nations (UN) is an intergovernmental organization aiming to maintain international peace and international security, security, develop friendly relations among nations, achieve international cooperation, and be a centre for harm ...

United Nations
uses a combination of ISO 3166-1 alpha-2 and alpha-3 codes, along with codes that pre-date the creation of ISO 3166, for international vehicle registration codes, which are codes used to identify the issuing country of a vehicle registration plate; some of these codes are currently indeterminately reserved in ISO 3166-1.
IETF language tag An IETF BCP 47 language tag is a standardized code or tag that is used to identify human languages in internet programming as used by computing standards such as HTTP The Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) is an application layer An applica ...
s (conforming to the BCP 47 standard track and maintained in an
IANA The Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) is a standards organization that oversees global IP address allocation, Autonomous system (Internet), autonomous system number allocation, DNS root zone, root zone management in the Domain Name Sys ...
registry) are also partially derived from ISO 3166-1 alpha-2 codes (for the region subtags). The full list of ISO 3166-1 codes assigned to countries and territories are usable as region subtags. Also, the "exceptionally reserved" alpha-2 codes defined in ISO 3166-1 (with the exception of ) are also usable as region subtags for language tags. However, newer stability policies (agreed with ISO) have been implemented to avoid deleting subtags that have been withdrawn in ISO 3166-1; instead they are kept and aliased to the new preferred subtags, or kept as subtags grouping several countries. Some other region grouping subtags are derived from other standards. Under the newer stability policies, old assigned codes that have been withdrawn from ISO 3166-1 should no longer be reassigned to another country or territory (as has occurred in the past for "CS").


Current codes


Decoding table

The following is a colour-coded decoding table of all ISO 3166-1 alpha-2 codes.


Officially assigned code elements

The following is a complete list of the 249 current officially assigned ISO 3166-1 alpha-2 codes, with the following columns: * Code: ISO 3166-1 alpha-2 code, pointing to its
ISO 3166-2 ISO 3166-2 is part of the ISO 3166 ISO 3166 is a standard Standard may refer to: Flags * Colours, standards and guidons * Standard (flag), a type of flag used for personal identification Norm, convention or requirement * Standard (metrol ...
article * Country name: English short name officially used by the ISO 3166 Maintenance Agency (ISO 3166/MA) * Year: Year when alpha-2 code was first officially assigned (1974, first edition of ISO 3166) * ccTLD: Corresponding
country code top-level domain A country code top-level domain (ccTLD) is an Internet top-level domain generally used or reserved for a country, sovereign state, or dependent territory identified with a country code. All ASCII ccTLD identifiers are two letters long, and all tw ...
(note that some are inactive); exceptions where another ccTLD is assigned for the country are shown in parentheses * Notes: Any unofficial notes


User-assigned code elements

User-assigned code elements are codes at the disposal of users who need to add further names of countries, territories, or other geographical entities to their in-house application of ISO 3166-1, and the ISO 3166/MA will never use these codes in the updating process of the standard. The following alpha-2 codes can be user-assigned: , to , to , and . For example: * The
International Standard Recording Code The International Standard Recording Code (ISRC) is an international standard code for uniquely identifying sound recordings and music video recordings. The code was developed by the recording industry in conjunction with the ISO The Internati ...
(ISRC) uses as a second country code for the United States, as it ran out of three-character registrant codes within the prefix. It also uses for some registrants assigned directly. * The
Unicode Unicode, formally the Unicode Standard, is an information technology Technical standard, standard for the consistent character encoding, encoding, representation, and handling of Character (computing), text expressed in most of the world's wri ...

Unicode
Common Locale Data Repository The Common Locale Data Repository Project, often abbreviated as CLDR, is a project of the Unicode Consortium The Unicode Consortium (legally Unicode, Inc.) is a 501(c)(3) A 501(c)(3) organization is a corporation, trust, unincorporated asso ...
(CLDR) assigns to represent Outlying Oceania (a multi-territory region containing
Antarctica Antarctica ( or ) is Earth's southernmost continent. It contains the geographic South Pole and is situated in the Antarctic region of the Southern Hemisphere, almost entirely south of the Antarctic Circle, and is surrounded by the Southern Oc ...

Antarctica
,
Bouvet Island Bouvet Island ( ) is an uninhabited subantarctic The sub-Antarctic zone is a physiographic regions of the world, region in the Southern Hemisphere The Southern Hemisphere is the half (Hemispheres of Earth, hemisphere) of Earth that is ...

Bouvet Island
, the
Cocos (Keeling) Islands ) , anthem = , song_type = , song = , image_map = Australia on the globe (Cocos (Keeling) Islands special) (Southeast Asia centered).svg , map_alt = Location of the Cocos (Keeling) Islands , map_caption = Location of the Cocos (Keeli ...
,
Christmas Island Christmas Island, officially known as the Territory of Christmas Island, is an Australian external territory comprising the island of the same name. It is located in the Indian Ocean, around south of Java Java ( id, Jawa, ; jv, ꦗ ...

Christmas Island
,
South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands ) , anthem = "God Save the Queen "God Save the Queen", alternatively "God Save the King" (dependent on the gender of the reigning monarch), is the or in most s, their territories, and the British . The author of the tune is unknown, and ...

South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands
,
Heard Island and McDonald Islands The Territory of Heard Island and McDonald Islands (HIMI) is an Australian external territory comprising a volcanic group of mostly barren Antarctic islands, about two-thirds of the way from Madagascar Madagascar (; mg, Madagasikara), ...
, the
British Indian Ocean Territory The British Indian Ocean Territory (BIOT) is a British overseas territory The British Overseas Territories (BOTs), also known as United Kingdom Overseas Territories (UKOTs), are fourteen territories all with a constitutional and histori ...

British Indian Ocean Territory
, the French Southern Territories, and the
United States Minor Outlying Islands United States Minor Outlying Islands is a statistical designation defined by the International Organization for Standardization The International Organization for Standardization (ISO ) is an international standard-setting body composed ...

United States Minor Outlying Islands
), and to represent "Unknown or Invalid Territory". Before the adoption of the macroregion code by ISO, CLDR also used to represent the
European Union The European Union (EU) is a political and economic union of member states that are located primarily in Europe Europe is a which is also recognised as part of , located entirely in the and mostly in the . It comprises the wester ...

European Union
. * The code is being used by the
World Intellectual Property Organization The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO; french: Organisation mondiale de la propriété intellectuelle (OMPI)) is one of the list of specialized agencies of the United Nations, 15 specialized agencies of the United Nations (UN). Pu ...
(WIPO) as an indicator for the
Community Plant Variety Office The Community Plant Variety Office (CPVO) is an agencies of the European Union, agency of the European Union, located in Angers, France. It was established in 1994. Its task is to administer a system of plant breeders' rights, plant variety right ...
. * The code is being used by
Switzerland , french: Suisse(sse), it, svizzero/svizzera or , rm, Svizzer/Svizra , government_type = Federalism, Federal semi-direct democracy under an assembly-independent Directorial system, directorial republic , leader_title1 = Fe ...

Switzerland
, as a country code for the
Canary Islands The Canary Islands (; es, Islas Canarias, ), also known informally as ''the Canaries'', is a Spanish archipelago An archipelago ( ), sometimes called an island group or island chain, is a chain, cluster or collection of island ...
, although is already reserved for that purpose. * The code is being used by the
UK Government ga, Rialtas na Ríochta Aontaithe sco, Govrenment o the Unitit Kinrick , image = HM Government logo.svg , image_size=220px, date_established = , state = United Kingdom , address = 10 Downing Street, London , leader_title = Prime Minister ...
, as an EORI number country code prefix for
Northern Ireland Northern Ireland ( ga, Tuaisceart Éireann ; sco, label=Ulster-ScotsUlster Scots, also known as Scotch-Irish, may refer to: * Ulster Scots people The Ulster Scots (Ulster-Scots The Ulster Scots (Ulster Scots dialects, Ulster- ...

Northern Ireland
. * The code is being used by the
European Commission The European Commission (EC) is the executive branch The executive is the branch of government exercising authority in and holding Moral responsibility, responsibility for the governance of a State (polity), state. The executive executes a ...

European Commission
, the
IMF The International Monetary Fund (IMF) is an international financial institution, headquartered in Washington, D.C. ) , image_skyline = , image_caption = Clockwise from top left: the Washington Monu ...

IMF
, and
SWIFT The Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT), legally S.W.I.F.T. SCRL, is a Belgium, Belgian cooperative society that serves as an intermediary and executor of financial transactions between banks worldwide. It also ...
, the
CLDR The Common Locale Data Repository Project, often abbreviated as CLDR, is a project of the Unicode Consortium The Unicode Consortium (legally Unicode, Inc.) is a 501(c)(3) A 501(c)(3) organization is a corporation, trust, unincorporated asso ...
, and other organizations as a temporary country code for
Kosovo Kosovo, or ; sr-Cyrl, Косово officially the Republic of Kosovo,; sr, / is a partially recognised state in Southeast Europe Southeast Europe or Southeastern Europe () is a geographical subregion A subregion is a part of a ...

Kosovo
. * The code is being used by WIPO as an indicator for the
Nordic Patent Institute The Nordic Patent Institute (NPI) is an intergovernmental organisation established by the governments of Denmark, Iceland and Norway.International Union for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants The International Union for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants or UPOV (french: link=no, Union internationale pour la protection des obtentions végétales) is a non-United Nations intergovernmental organization An intergovernmental ...

International Union for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants
. * The code is being used by WIPO as an indicator for the
Visegrad Patent InstituteThe Visegrad Patent Institute (VPI) is an intergovernmental organization for cooperation in the field of patent NPOV disputes from March 2021 A patent is a Title (property), title that gives its owner the legal right to exclude others from makin ...
. * The code is being used by WIPO as an indicator for unknown states, other entities or organizations. *
UN/LOCODE UN/LOCODE, the United Nations Code for Trade and Transport Locations, is a geocode, geographic coding scheme developed and maintained by United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE). UN/LOCODE assigns codes to locations used in trade and t ...
assigns to represent installations in
international waters The terms international waters or trans-boundary waters apply where any of the following types of bodies of water (or their drainage basin A drainage basin is any area of land where precipitation collects and drains off into a common ou ...

international waters
. Furthermore, the code element is designated as an escape code if the number of regular user-assigned code elements is not sufficient.


Reserved code elements

Reserved code elements are codes which have become obsolete, or are required in order to enable a particular user application of the standard but do not qualify for inclusion in ISO 3166-1. To avoid transitional application problems and to aid users who require specific additional code elements for the functioning of their coding systems, the ISO 3166/MA, when justified, reserves these codes which it undertakes not to use for other than specified purposes during a limited or indeterminate period of time. The reserved alpha-2 codes can be divided into the following four categories: exceptional reservations, transitional reservations, indeterminate reservations, and codes currently agreed not to use.


Exceptional reservations

Exceptionally reserved code elements are codes reserved at the request of national ISO member bodies, governments and international organizations, which are required in order to support a particular application, as specified by the requesting body and limited to such use; any further use of such code elements is subject to approval by the ISO 3166/MA. The following alpha-2 codes are currently exceptionally reserved: The following alpha-2 codes were previously exceptionally reserved, but are now officially assigned:


Transitional reservations

Transitional reserved code elements are codes reserved after their deletion from ISO 3166-1. These codes may be used only during a transitional period of at least five years while new code elements that may have replaced them are taken into use. These codes may be reassigned by the ISO 3166/MA after the expiration of the transitional period. The following alpha-2 codes are currently transitionally reserved: The following alpha-2 code was previously transitionally reserved, but was later reassigned to another country as its official code: For each deleted alpha-2 code, an entry for the corresponding former country name is included in
ISO 3166-3 ISO 3166-3 is part of the ISO 3166 ISO 3166 is a standard Standard may refer to: Flags * Colours, standards and guidons * Standard (flag), a type of flag used for personal identification Norm, convention or requirement * Standard (metrol ...
. Each entry is assigned a four-letter alphabetic code, where the first two letters are the deleted alpha-2 code.


Indeterminate reservations

Indeterminately reserved code elements are codes used to designate road vehicles under the 1949 and but differing from those contained in ISO 3166-1. These code elements are expected eventually to be either eliminated or replaced by code elements within ISO 3166-1. In the meantime, the ISO 3166/MA has reserved such code elements for an indeterminate period. Any use beyond the application of the two Conventions is discouraged and will not be approved by the ISO 3166/MA. Moreover, these codes may be reassigned by the ISO 3166/MA at any time. The following alpha-2 codes are currently indeterminately reserved: The following alpha-2 codes were previously indeterminately reserved, but have been reassigned to another country as its official code: ; Notes


Codes currently agreed not to use

In addition, the ISO 3166/MA will not use the following alpha-2 codes at the present stage, as they are used for international
intellectual property organizationIntellectual property organizations are organizations that are focused on copyright Copyright is a type of intellectual property that gives its owner the exclusive right to make copies of a creative work, usually for a limited time. The creati ...
s in
WIPO The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO; french: Organisation mondiale de la propriété intellectuelle (OMPI)) is one of the 15 specialized agencies of the United Nations The United Nations (UN) is an intergovernmental o ...
Standard ST.3: WIPO Standard ST.3 actually uses , instead of , to represent the
Eurasian Patent Organization The Eurasian Patent Organization (EAPO) is an international organization set up in 1995 by the Eurasian Patent Convention (EAPC) to grant Eurasia, Eurasian patents. The official language of the EAPO is Russian language, Russian and its current pre ...
. However, was already exceptionally reserved by the ISO 3166/MA to represent
Ceuta Ceuta (, , ; ber, Sebta, script=Latn; ar, سَبْتَة, Sabtah) is a Spanish Spanish may refer to: * Items from or related to Spain: **Spaniards, a nation and ethnic group indigenous to Spain **Spanish language **Spanish cuisine Other pl ...

Ceuta
and
Melilla Melilla ( , ; ; ber, Mrich / Mlilt; ar, مليلية ) is an autonomous city of Spain , image_flag = Bandera de España.svg , image_coat = Escudo de España (mazonado).svg , national_motto = , nation ...

Melilla
for customs purposes. The ISO 3166/MA proposed in 1995 that be used by WIPO to represent the Eurasian Patent Organization; however, this request was not honoured by WIPO.


Deleted codes

Besides the codes currently transitionally reserved and two other codes currently exceptionally reserved ( for and for
USSR The Soviet Union,. officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. (USSR),. was a socialist state that spanned Eurasia during its existence from 1922 to 1991. It was nominally a Federation, federal union of multiple national Republics of ...
), the following alpha-2 codes have also been deleted from ISO 3166-1: For each deleted alpha-2 code, an entry for the corresponding former country name is included in
ISO 3166-3 ISO 3166-3 is part of the ISO 3166 ISO 3166 is a standard Standard may refer to: Flags * Colours, standards and guidons * Standard (flag), a type of flag used for personal identification Norm, convention or requirement * Standard (metrol ...
. Each entry is assigned a four-letter alphabetic code, where the first two letters are the deleted alpha-2 code.


See also

*
List of FIPS country codes This is a list of FIPS 10-4 country codes The International Organization for Standardization The International Organization for Standardization (ISO; ) is an international standard-setting body composed of representatives from various nation ...
in
FIPS 10-4 The Federal Information Processing Standard, FIPS 10-4 standard, ''Countries, Dependencies, Areas of Special Sovereignty, and Their Principal Administrative Divisions'', was a list of two-letter country codes that were used by the U.S. Government ...
, part of the
Federal Information Processing Standards The United States The United States of America (U.S.A. or USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US) or America, is a country Continental United States, primarily located in North America. It consists of 50 U.S. state, states ...
(FIPS) * The Regional Indicator Symbol in Unicode, introduced to use these codes *
ISO 639-1 ISO 639-1:2002, ''Codes for the representation of names of languages—Part 1: Alpha-2 code'', is the first part of the ISO 639 series of International Organization for Standardization, international standards for language codes. Part 1 covers th ...
, a different set of two-letter codes used for languages


References


Sources and external links


ISO 3166 Maintenance Agency
International Organization for Standardization (ISO) *
Online Browsing Platform (OBP)
— searchable list of country codes *

*

** ''Reserved code elements under ISO 3166-1 "Codes for the representation of names of countries and their subdivisions – Part 1: Country codes"'', available on request from ISO 3166/MA * ''
The World Factbook ''The World Factbook'', also known as the ''CIA World Factbook'', is a reference resource produced by the Central Intelligence Agency The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA; ), known informally as the Agency and the Company, is a civilian ...
'' (public domain), Central Intelligence Agency *
Appendix D – Country Data Codes
— comparison of FIPS 10, ISO 3166, and STANAG 1059 country codes
Core Datasets Project ISO 3166-1-alpha-2 English country names and code elements (HTML, CSV, JSON)
*
Core Datasets Project Comprehensive country codes: ISO 3166, ITU, ISO 4217 currency codes and many more (HTML, CSV, JSON)

Administrative Divisions of Countries ("Statoids")
Statoids.com *

— comparison of ISO 3166-1 country codes with other country codes *

{{DEFAULTSORT:Iso 3166-1 Alpha-2 1 alpha-2 Country codes Location codes