Revision of Recommendation 16


Project Details

Project Identifier
Bureau Decision #
Project Proposal Status


Project Page

Revision of Recommendation 16

Supporting VC
Project Lead
HoD Support
FI / TR / MY
Submitted date
Draft Development Completion
Publication Date

Project Purpose

The UN/LOCODE has emerged as the prominent international standard for referring to locations used in international trade. The UN/LOCODE is used by carriers, logistics providers, multinational corporations and software providers as the standard way to refer to cities, ports, airports, etc. Given the adoption of the UN/LOCODE, changes to the standard can have major impact on industry. The rules governing the maintenance of the UN/LOCODE (Recommendation 16) are based on the business scenario of several decades ago. However, the use and importance of the UN/LOCODE has grown tremendously since Recommendation 16 was last updated in 1998. The purpose of this project is to update Recommendation 16 in order to allow it to continue to govern the modern usage of the UN/LOCODE. Emerging industry requirements are leading to inconsistencies in the application of the codes. An update to Recommendation 16 will add more specificity to definitions and process, leading to less ambiguity and more consistency in the application of the codes. It will ensure that the UN/LOCODE remains an important international standard which keeps pace with the changes in usage and in technology.

Project Scope

The update to Recommendation 16 will address the following questions that have emerged in recent years: 1. What is the precise definition of a location? Is it a point or an area? Which entities should be allocated a UN/LOCODE? 2. What are good, unambiguous definitions for the existing Function Codes: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, B? Should new function codes be added? 3. What is the process to handle locations which have multiple names – either from different languages or otherwise? 4. How should political change when locations change hands or new countries emerge be handled? 5. Should there be changes to the Status of location codes? For instance, do we need a better process and definition for “Request under consideration” given that there is currently no workflow to move these from “under consideration” to “approved”? 6. What is the policy around changing or removing codes which had been previously published and are already in use? When a code has been deprecated, is it acceptable to reassign the code to another location? 7. Is there a need to limit the number of requests made for new codes or changes to existing codes from a single entity for a given cycle? 8. Should precision of coordinates be improved from minutes to seconds? 9. Should new attributes be added, for example, time zone? In addition to answering the above questions, comments will be solicited from participating experts from standards bodies, logistics providers and industry in order to address challenges they have with the use and maintenance of the UN/LOCODE standard.

Project Deliverables

The project deliverables are: a) Revised Recommendation 16 Recommendation & Guidelines

Exit Criteria

a) Revised Recommendation 16 Recommendation & Guidelines • Internal and external review logs showing how comments have been addressed • Final draft text ready for publication

Project Team Membership and Required Functional Expertise

Membership is open to experts with broad knowledge and experience in the area of transport, clearance, supply chain and related activities as well as in recommendation drafting. In addition, Heads of Delegations may invite technical experts from their constituency to participate in the work. Experts are expected to contribute to the work based solely on their expertise and to comply with the UN/CEFACT Code of Conduct and Ethics and the policy on Intellectual Property Rights.

Geographical Focus

The geographical focus of the project is global.

Initial Contributions

• UNECE Recommendation 16 • UN/LOCODE Advisory Group Terms of Reference • UN/LOCODE Focal Point Terms of Reference

Resource Requirements

Participants in the project shall provide resources for their own participation. The existence and functioning of the project shall not require any additional resources from the UNECE secretariat. The project will be prepared in between Forums, principally using conference call facilities.

Project Proposal Files