Talk:ISO Codes

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These ISO / OIS / CCC / IPU codes is one of those areas of IB that has not yet been settled, and is in certain need of further discussion. As I see it, several broad concerns still need to be worked out:

1. Does IB need such a standard list of country codes? And does it need an Organisation to do it in? It seems that the concensus is in general positive, or at least a lukewarm concensus that it would be a good idea. As for the need for a standards organisation, we don't seem to have a concensus there.

2. Who needs such a scheme? The answer(s) here lean most heavily on the International Postal Union and international car plates (International League of Mororists???). IB doesn't have an internet to speak of, so these codes are not, historically speaking anyway, domain codes (like .uk or .ca). The Postal Union goes back many decades as does the organisation that handles the car plates, and I can see the great utility that an internationally recognised set of standard codes would have. If you're sending a package from England to Japan, chances are it's going to end up on an airship route that could land and change cargo in Greece, perhaps Iran, somewhere in India and somewhere in China (where none of them normally read Latin script addresses) before going on to Japan. A code that every postal officer in the world recognises as meaning "JAPAN", even if the letters themselves are meaningless to him, at least helps the package get on its way.

3. What is the ISO in IB, or is there even one? This one we haven't sorted out yet. I now rather tend to agree that IB probably wouldn't have a world wide standards organisation at all. There are certainly regional and international standards (like the CICEP's SI), but they aren't universally applied. If the International Postal Union and the International League of Motorists are the ones who have used these codes the most historically, then I would think it's more a matter of international treaty, perhaps later sanctioned and overseen by the League of Nations, rather than some mysterious organisation.

4. What's in a name? Three proposed names for the organisation and the codes have been bandied about, with no concensus reached yet. We have ISO (International Standards Organisation) as per *here*; OIS (Organisation of International Standards) and CCC (CICEP Country Codes), assuming that CICEP would be interested in maintaining country codes. At this point, I don't like any of them: an organisation specifically charged with devising and maintaining country codes is probably not needed in IB, especially if these codes originated with the Postal Union. CICEP's charter mandates that it calculate and fix a set of standard scientific measures, not devise or maintain a list of country abbreviation codes, so I don't think that organisation should have anything to do with it. I would propose that we (eventually) move this whole country code list to an article on the International Postal Union, if we decide that is most appropriate.

5. Do the IPU and ILM codes have to be the same? I don't think the country codes HAVE to be the same between the two organisations, though some certainly could be. Especially given the history we have of the international car plates. That seems to have grown quite organically from small beginings. I think that is reflected in the oldest members having single letter codes, while later countries have two and three letter codes. I would suspect that the postal codes were more or less determined at one time and have by now been long enshrined by whatever international custodian takes care of it (probably the IPU itself a/o the LoN).

6. How many letters should the codes have? We seem to be in agreement that anywhere from one to three letters is acceptable. There again, perhaps the "principle signatories" to the original IPU treaty could have taken the one letter codes and the nice two letter ones?

CONCLUSION: I think what we need to do here is simply piss or get or get off the pot. 1. We need to sort the underlying issues: yes or no to the ISO; or is this a matter for the International Postal Union? 2. Then make a decision on how many letters the codes should have. 3. Then combine and synthesise the four lists into one and update that list with any countries not found in the old lists. 5. If we decide that the car plate codes can be a separate issue, leave them be -- they seem to be pretty well sorted out at International License Plate Codes 6. If we decide that the car plate codes should be identical to the postal country codes, then they need to be updated.

In order to facilitate discussion, I think it would make sense to combine this article and the material at ISO Codes/Temp and then delete that article that was obviously intended to be a temporary article! Elemtilas 14:06, 29 August 2010 (UTC)

I don't see two being practical. Even three might run into limits, but I think the original standard would have been two or three alphanumerics. (In Latin script, of course, but is one of the many things that might have been changed later.) (Jefferson)
I think three is a good maximum. Otherwise, why bother with an abbreviated code at all? ;) I'm sure you're getting at the need for new codes in "crowded" parts of the alphabet. Someone mentioned in the discussion that an extended code could be used, something like E.KT.CAN where "E" stands for England and "KT" stands for Kent and "CAN" stands for Canterbury. Increasingly subnational entities could thus be encoded without encumbering the top level codes in the least. A local code like "CAN" would be meaningless in an international sense, but when used in conjunction with top level "E", it makes sense.
I think the original example given was the international code for Japan, and then an appended national code for Japan's subregions. I think we could simply string together as many subnational codes as might be required for whatever job is being done. Elemtilas 21:41, 29 August 2010 (UTC)

Padraic, you just created a page that had been deleted before (apparently there was consensus within the group about that, see Lla Dafern). Now that you recreated the page, I decided to undelete the original page: now it is part of the history of the new page (here). Because I think this last wiki version might be slightly more up-to-date, I also add it below. --IJzeren Jan 10:56, 6 Jun 2005 (PDT)

Oh? Sorry? Just out of curiosity, why were the postcodes fodder for deletion? Totally forgot I even responded to you! I wasn't aware, though as BoArthur apparently is, that we decided to trash them. Frankly, I think there are too many uses they can be put to, even though there isn't an "interlinked webwork" and probably no ISO that is separate from CICEP. I wasn't aware of any concensus that they weren't needed at all. (Unless I forgot about that, too! -- yoiks!)
Perhaps this page can be renamed "Country Codes" and given over to the International Postal Union as intended? Elemtilas
Fodder for deletion? No idea why that was! I just noticed it after the page had already been deleted.
Re:ISO: Well, that makes sense. If there is no separate ISO, we may as well call them CICEP Country Codes (or perhaps simply CCCs). That also solves the problem that we might get in trouble with the real ISO.
The only difficulty I see there is that CICEP is interested in scientific standards, not postal codes! This is why I suggested we not bother with "ISO" at all and leave these codes the purview of the International Postal Union. Elemtilas
The list below is the most recent version, no doubt. But quite a lot has been changed since then; apart from the fact that we were joined by more than one new member, we've made many new discoveries about Africa. I suggest we use that list as a basis for new one. Perhaps we can use the occasion to make some improvements, too. For example, we could pick three-letter codes for defunct nations (XDC for the Danubian Confederation, for example) instead of two. Subnational entities could perhaps have a code like SR-DM (or SR-DK, for Denmark as part of the Scandinavian Realm; if Denmark is to be treated as a nation, then the SR should perhaps better be treated as a supranational organisation and have a three-letter code like SCR).
One last note: How IB would it really be to have everything standardised? Wouldn't it be a lot more IB if one country could have several codes, and if there were separate codes for post, for banknotes, and for cars?
Well, in typical IB fashion, there can be both an international standard (such as these "ISO" codes) plus various national standards. For example, while KE is the "ISO" code for Kemr in international post, it has long had the code CBA (for Cambria) which is in common use by Commonwealth countries. Elemtilas
Especially in the case of the cars, I wouldn't like them to be standardised into two-letter codes. I just prefer K for Kemr, F for France, B for the Batavian Kingdom, RTC or RDK for the RTC, etc.
And that would depend on the country as well. The NAL would most probably, like *here*'s USA or Canuckistan, leave such decisions to the Provinces. That's too piddly and local for the Federales to get involved with. Elemtilas
Ah, Rio de la Plata is Riu de L'Argent now, and will probably not carry the code RP. I would like to reserve that code for the RTC, if possible. Somehow I could never convince myself to DK. RP (from RzejPubiełka) would fit better.
--IJzeren Jan 07:09, 7 Jun 2005 (PDT)
I kinda liked the standardization in this particular case. *Here* isn't perfectly globalized, after all, why should *there* be a place of maximal entropy? It sure would make it easier for us.
Also, Jervaine seems to be referred to as JE on one page and JR on the other. I'd like to go with JE, it's just prettier.  ;o) The Jervan 08:28, 7 Jun 2005 (PDT)
Actually, on a Jervan car I'd most likely expect J! Otherwise, I agree that JE looks better than JR. --IJzeren Jan
We discussed this years ago. Don't ask me why exactly, but apparently it's QSS that such codes do not fit the setting of IB. That in itself is a good enough reason to delete the page, IMO.
What concerns me most about these codes is not its non-conformity with QSS, but its potential to require constant change. Inevitably, some codes are more prudent than others. The problem is that we will always discover new countries, and we will always discover new standard romanization schemes for spelling the names of other countries, both of which will require codes that would be more prudent than previously established codes. But if we change the coding of one country, then it affects the coding of all the other countries. I can't help but feel that this would have to be done time and time and time again and again. Why bother? IMO, until we are absolutely sure about the number of countries that exist in IB and how their names are spelled, I say we pospone the creation of such codes indefinitely.
That is certainly a fair and well founded argument against them, though most of the countries we know about haven't changed all that much. I'm quite certain that CBA/KE Kemr and NAL aren't going to change overnight to something novel! Elemtilas
Another thing is that the two-letter coding is flawed from the start. It would be better if it were a three-letter code, considering how many more countries there are in IB than *here*. Or, as Jan has suggested, allow for a choice of having from one to three letters for the codes. This would minimize the need to change the whole list every time -- if we absolutely need these codes.
If we absolutely have to have such codes, then I think calling it CCC (CICEP Country Codes) is a good idea. Boreanesia 08:42, 7 Jun 2005 (PDT)
Some kind of country code system is likely, given the large number of supranational blocs in existence, where postal systems and currencies are interlinked and interchangeable. Whether that system is CICEP's domain, the Postal Union's domain or something in between... Elemtilas
First of all, I agree with you that there is the potential of constant change. And besides, there is the problem that you get several lists of countries that have to be maintained simultaneously - a bit like the Nations of Ill Bethisad vs. NOIB problem. But frankly, I don't see that as a minus. The same thing applies for maps and the like. Dealing with constant change is part of the game, no more and no less. I'd say, if you don't like this particular bit, then just don't bother; there may be others who are interested in making this their project.
About the changing romanisation schemes: yes, you are right about that too. But the truth is: we know much more about IB then we knew back then, and I think we have all the knowledge necessary to make this work. --IJzeren Jan 11:26, 7 Jun 2005 (PDT)
I have nothing against slight adjustments hither and thither. But the changes we do to the maps or on the Nations of Ill Bethisad and NOIB pages, would not be comparable to the changes we would have to do to a list of country codes. For instance, one small change to a regional map would not affect other regional maps. Similarly, one small name change to a country in the Nations of Ill Bethisad or NOIB pages would not affect the names of other countries. In comparison, one small change to a country code would mean changing ALL the other codes -- especially if they're restricted to two-letter codes. I still say that it would be much more wise to pospone the creation of such codes until we are absolutely sure there are no more countries to be discovered and until we have all the romanization schemes in place. Afterall, the reason why we have QSS is to avoid precisely this kind of problem!! Boreanesia 13:09, 7 Jun 2005 (PDT)
It seems to me that you exaggerate a bit - one small name change to a country should by no means make it necessary to change ALL the other codes. Why should it? Besides, if we postpone this to the moment that we know for sure that no more countries will be discovered, that means that it will never happen at all, because on that very moment IB will be officially dead.
I agree with you that three-letter codes will be better though: at least we avoid the necessity of shifting codes when a new country makes its appearance. However, if we decide to go for three-letter codes, then we must also decide what to do with supranational organisations, dead states, and subnational entities. --IJzeren Jan 15:25, 7 Jun 2005 (PDT)
Yes, obviously I'm exagerating. But have you ever tried suggesting changes to one or two of the codes based on what's recently been discovered? I have, and it's not easy. Change one code, and you risk starting a chain of changes. Keep in mind that the list below is incomplete and filled with errors in the first place -- especially with regards to Asian and African countries.
Codes that allow for one to three letters would be much better, instead of limiting ourselves to just two letters. Can we agree on that? They would be like letter codes on cars *here*, which vary from one-letter (e.g. "D" for Germany) to two-letter (e.g. "RP" for Philippines) to three-letters (e.g. "IRL" for Ireland). I don't think we need to distinguish the type of coding between nations, supranational organisations, dead states, and subnational entities. Boreanesia 23:23, 7 Jun 2005 (PDT)
You mean car codes, or áll CCC codes? Anyway, I agree. So, let's redo the list to make every country or organisation have a 1-3-letter code! IJzeren Jan 11:59, 8 Jun 2005 (PDT)
Not necessarily all of the countries, but it may easily cause a change to several others, if the name change creates a conflict with other codes.
As for dead states, I see no problem with that. That code would simply be "retired". Just as it wouldn't make sense *here* to reuse SU for a hypothetical new state, so *there* it wouldn't make sense to reuse, say, the code for the Confederation of Soviet Danubian States. Subnational states, I like the notion of a combination, like NP-CR for Corea (as part of the Japanese Empire). Supranational organizations can have their own codes on part with national entities, like, say, CO for the Commonwealth.
IB tends not to be as cut-and-dry as *here* on (sub/supra)nationality, so I would suggest that it would be up to each particular organization as to whether it's a nation or a supranational organization. For example, the states of the Scandinavian Realm might prefer to be classified as national entities while the kingdoms of the Federated Kingdoms would classify themselves as subnational, or vice versa. The Japanese Empire, I think, would prefer to consider itself as a national entity, thus, Corea would be classified as a subnational entity of that. Hence, you'd have NP for Japan and then NP-CR for Corea, NP-EZ for Ezo, NP-YA for Yamato, and NP-RY for Ryuukyuu (or maybe just NP-C, NP-E, NP-Y and NP-R) - Nik 22:29, 7 Jun 2005 (PDT)
That makes sense. On the other hand, if we have 1-3-letter codes, I think about any country or regions with nationlike aspirations could have its own code. I suppose the countries of the FK and the SR dó consider themselves full-fledged nations, be it for the sake of tradition. In the Russian Federation, I think most cars still have an R on them, although in the republics you can see quite a lot of VZ, RPN, etc. (which sort of holds a political statement). IJzeren Jan 11:59, 8 Jun 2005 (PDT)

Perhaps those of us with established and named countries can devise codes (based on whatever scheme is chosen) can continue with settling on codes. Those of us with countries whose names seem in flux or areas where romanisations are not fixed might have to wait. But also think on this: in the real world, when a country changes name, ceases to exist or comes into being, any codes that pertain to it will either change, cease to exist or come into being. Why should IB have to wait until no other countries are discovered? Just food for thought. Elemtilas
Are you sure about that? Read Boreanesia 23:23, 7 Jun 2005 (PDT)


A - B - C - D - E - F - G - H - I - J - K - L - M - N - O - P - Q - R - S - T - U - V - W - X - Y - Z

Supranational Organizations



AA Aaland (SR)
AC Alta California
AE United Arab Emirates
AF Afghanopakistan
AG Adyge (RU)
AH Anhalt (DE)
AI Altai (RU)
AK Arakan
AL Alyaska
AM Armorica
AO Western Sahara (CL)
AR Aragon
AS Syria
AT Austria
AU Australesia
AX Aceh  
AZ Azerbaijan


BA Batavia
BD Baden (DE)
BE Belarus
BG Bulgaria
BF Bedouin Free State
BH China (Beihanguo)
BI Bahia
BK Bashkortostan (RU)
BN Bengal
BO Bohemia
BP Bahawalpur
BR Brasil
BS Al-Basra
BT Buryatia (RU)
BU Bhutan
BW Brunsweig (DE)
BY Bavarian Soviet Republic (DE)


CA Kemr (Cambria) (FK)
CB Republic of Chelyabinsk (RU)
CC Central America Community (CL)
CE Ceuta (CL)
CH Charcas
CI Chile
CK Cham Kingdom
CL Castile & Leon
CM Mansiland & Khantiland (RU)
CN Conch Republic
CO Cornouelle/Brittany
CR Crimea
CS Circars
CT Confederacy of Chittagong
CU Chukotka
CV Croatia
CW Chuvashia (RU)
CX Castillian Territories (CL)
CY Ceylon
CZ Cruzan Islands (FC/SR)


DE Germany
DK Republic of Two Crowns
DL Dalmatia
DM Denmark (SR)
DO Don Republic (RU)
DS Two Sicilies
DU Dunein
DZ Danzig


EA Chinese East Africa
EG English Guyana
EI Eire
EL Greece
EN England (FK)
EQ Equador
ER Eritrea
ES Castilian Spain (CL)
ET Ethiopia
EZ Ezo


FC Florida-Caribbea
FI Francie (FR)
FJ Fujian, Taiwan & Hainan
FK Federated Kingdoms
FO Faroe Islands (SR)
FR France
FS Finland
FW Grand Fenwick


GA Galicia (DK)
GB Gabon
GC Cambrian Guyana
GF French Guyana
GK Moi Gok
GL Gaulhe
GR Greenland
GU Guinea
GZ Guangzhou


IC Canary Islands (CL)
IJ Sanjak
IQ Iraaq
IR Persia
IS Iceland
IT Italy


JE Jervaine
JU Judea
JZ Algeria


KA Golden Coast
KH Khmer
KI Kashmir
KK Khakassia (RU)
KL Kalmykia (RU)
KM Kamerun
KN Kanawiki
KO Kongo
KP Komi Republic
KR Corea
KS Saudi Kingdom
KT Kamatacha
KU Kurdistan
KW Kuwayt
KZ KwaZulu


LB Lebanon
LH Lao-Hmong Union
LI Lippe (DE)
LK Maluku
LO Louisiana
LT Lithuania (DK)
LU Luxemburg (DE)
LV Latvia


MA Mali
MC Monaco
MD Moldova (RF)
ME Mejico
MH Maghreb
MI Egypt
MJ Mazapahit
MK Mecklenburg (DE)
ML Malta
MM Burma
MN Mongolia
MO Monland
MP Araucania & Patagonia
MQ Muskovia (RU)
MR Montrei
MS Mueva Sefarad (NL)
MU Muntenia (RF)
MV Maldives
MW Mordovia (RU)
MX Melilla
MY Mysore
MZ Mari-El (RU)


NA Nauru
NC Nanchang
ND New Dalmatia
NE Nenetsia (RU)
NF Nouvelle-Francie
NG New Granada (CL)
NH Japan
NI New Iceland (NL,SR)
NK North Caucasian Federation (RU)
NL North American League
NN Nanhanguo
NO Norway (SR)
NP Nepal
NV Nasesk Vesemir
NX Nikobar Islands


OB Oldemburg (DE,SR)
OK Okinawa
OL Oltenia (RF)
ON Oran
OR Oregon
OU Oudh


PA Parana
PE Peru
PG Paraguay
PM Permic Republic (RU)
PN Petrograd & Novgorod (RU)
PO Portugal
PP Pilipinas
PR Prussia (DE)
PS Pontifical States
PY Primoria


QQ Kazak (RU)


RF Romanian Federation
RH Rheinland-Pfalz (DE)
RJ Rajputania
RP Rio de La Plata
RU Russia


SB Serbia  
SC Scotland (FK)
SD Somaliland
SG Shanghai
SH Shetland
SI Saugeais
SJ Samraj
SK Sikh Rázj Sam̃ðh
SL Slevania
SM San Marino
SN Sind
SP Sapme
SQ Albania
SR Scandinavia
SS Siberia (RU)
ST Spratley Islands
SU Suriname
SV Georgia
SW Sweden
SX Saxony (DE)
SY Srivijaya


TA Tai Republic
TC Tocharstan (Tugristan) (RU)
TE Tejas
TF Tranquebar-Frederiksnagore
TH Thuringia (DE)
TI Tibet
TM Tenaserim
TN Turkestan
TO Togo
TS Tatarstan (RU)
TT Tannu-Tuva (RU)
TU Tunisia
TV Travancore
TW Tawantinsuyo


UD Udmurcia (RU)
UK Ucraine
UL Ural Republic (RU)
UR Uruguay
UY Uyguristan


VE Venezuela
VG Volga German Republic (RU)
VH Hessen (DE)
VO Volta Eszcelza
VT Nam Viet
VZ Vozgian Republic (RU)


WI Wight
WN Veneda (DK)
WP Waldeck-Pyrmont (DE)
WU Wuerttemberg (DE)


XA Austro-Dalmatia*
XD Danubian Confederation*
XH Dalmatian Herzegovina*
XK Serb Kozara*
XL Xliponia
XM Montenegro
XS Serb Slavonia*  
XU Slavonic Union*
XV Slovenia*


YA Yakutia (RU)
YE Yemen


ZA South Africa  
ZH Zhuanguo

Supranational Organizations

BAL Baltic League
KDS Community of Dalmotophone States
LAR Aragonese League
MCN Castilian Commonwealth of Nations
PAN Andean Pact
ULA Lusoamerican Union
I have added XL for Xliponia (of course!). I agree with BI for Bahia (as the pronunciation is /ba'ia/, with three syllables and stress on the I), also with BR for Brasil (please, never BZ - the country is written with an S, only in certain languages - such as English - with a Z!), which we already use in *here*'s Brasil, and EQ for Equador and PA for Paraná. Kyrmse 03:42, 11 Aug 2005 (PDT)

One-letter codes on cars

Just for the heck of it, here is a list of possible one-letter codes on cars. Mind, I'm only doing this for the fun of it. It's hardly a proposal. But perhaps I'll propose it anyway! :)

A - Austria
B - Batavian Kingdom (*here* Belgium)
C - Castile? Kemr?
D - An interesting one. Germany, like *here*? Or rather Dalmatia?
E - Eire? England? Egypt? (*here*: Spain)
F - France
G - ---
H - Hungary? Otherwise Helvetia.
I - Italy
J - Jervaine (or perhaps Helvetia, or Japan)
K - Kemr, perhaps?
L - Luxemburg, Lithuania (or maybe Veneda and Lithuania should have one code as RTC?)
M - Malta, Muntenia
N - Norway? Japan?
O - Oldenburg, if anything. Perhaps Oltenia.
P - Portugal
Q - ---
R - Russia?
S - Scandinavia. Perhaps Sweden.
T - Tejas
U - Uruguay, Ukraine
V - ---
W - Veneda, perhaps.
X - Possibly Xliponia, although I'd rather expect XL there.
Y - ---
Z - ---

--IJzeren Jan 11:41, 7 Jun 2005 (PDT)

I'm in favour of XL, not X for Xliponia - too small to have a one-letter code. Kyrmse 13:40, 7 Jun 2005 (PDT)
Yeah... after all, we already háve been using XL quite a lot, haven't we? On the other hand, I don't fully agree with the argument that XL is too small for a one-letter code. *Here*, Luxemburg and Malta (not sure about the latter) both have one-letter codes. I think more important than size are two other things: the location of the country (preferably in Europe), and its political status in the past. --IJzeren Jan 15:25, 7 Jun 2005 (PDT)
I'm not clear on just what this is for. - Nik 22:30, 7 Jun 2005 (PDT)
Easy: for the oval stickers that use(d) to be on the back of cars to indicate the country. I suppose they never were really customary in the USA. Here in Europe you could see them on every car; I think it was compulsory. I speak in the past tense, because nowadays the nation code has been incorporated into the licence plate. IJzeren Jan 11:59, 8 Jun 2005 (PDT)
Also, See the Louisiannan license plates that have just an L on them........BoArthur
I'll add now that I've thought of this 4 years later that I'm sure Europe and North America can have overlap. Not to many cars are shunted overseas, after all. BoArthur 23:07, 22 April 2009 (UTC)

Sámráz and Rázputána

Sámráz and Rázputána should rather be SZ and RZ, don't you think, or are these codes supposed to be specifically Anglocentric? That would be a bit unlikely in IB IMHO. BPJ 09:51, 11 Aug 2005 (PDT)

Xliponia and Lusoamerican Union

As I have stated above, I am strongly in favour of - and have been using in IBWiki articles! - the following two-letter codes:

  • XL = Xliponia
  • BI = Bahia
  • BR = Brasil [not Brazil]
  • EQ = Equador
  • PA = Paraná

BI, BR, EQ, PA cover almost all of the Lusoamerican Union, except for Uruguay, of which I am not the direct tutor, only insofar as it is part of the ULA (União Lusoamericana). Kyrmse 04:52, 26 Sep 2005 (PDT)


Is now known as Sikh Rázj Sam̃ðh. I'll replace PJ for Punjab with SK for this. OK? --Quentin 06:05, 24 February 2006 (PST)


I'm calling HE for Te Pito O Te Henua, unless someone thinks PH or something would be better. Benkarnell 07:05, 22 October 2007 (PDT)

And actually, Tokelauans have always used TK as a postal code within the Fijian realm and will adopt it as a country code if it doesn't conflict with, say, Turkestan. Otherwise they can adopt TOK. Benkarnell 12:43, 27 November 2007 (PST)

CCC = CICEP Country Codes

Copied from Lla Dafern Archive 6:

This is a theme that has been brought up in the past as ISO Codes. I would like to revive it. As I have said before, I am strongly in favour of - and have been using in IBWiki articles! - the following two-letter codes:

  • XL = Xliponia
  • BI = Bahia
  • BR = Brasil [nót Brazil!]
  • EQ = Equador
  • PA = Paraná

If it should be decided that CCCs are to be triliteral (but do they really have to???), then my suggestions would be XLI, BHI [BAH looks funny], BRA, EQU, PAR respectively.

Maybe we should also have codes for languages (xl, po, de, br, we for instance).

The advantage of all this is that we'll be able to refer to a country or a language "in shorthand" as it were.

What say you all?! Kyrmse 17:27, 11 January 2006 (PST)

Such codes would be handy for the postal union, certainly. If you want to refer to a language with an abbreviation, knock yourself out! I prefer three to four letter abbrevs. for that purpose, but it doesn't matter much.
As for the codes above, XL is free, so Xliponia is taken care of. Bahia already has BH; Equador already has EQ; and Parana already has PA. BR is in conflict: between Brasil and Brittany. Frankly, I think Brasil ought to have it, as "Brittany" is just the English name for a region of France that already has a French name (Cornouaille).
Three letter codes might be used by individual countries or supranational organisations as they see fit. I think the two letter country code idea is pretty much accepted.
See ISO Codes for the lists. Elemtilas 21:53, 11 January 2006 (PST)
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