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EU-27, acceding state and candidate countries

7.1. Countries

7.1.1. Designations and abbreviations to use

(See also Annexes A5 and A6.)

Member States

The names of the Member States of the European Union must always be written and abbreviated according to the following rules:

the two-letter ISO code should be used (ISO 3166 alpha-2), except for Greece, for which the abbreviation EL is recommended;
the protocol order of the Member States is based on the Roman alphabetical order of their geographical names in the original language(s) (see also Section 7.1.2 ‘Country listing order’).
Short name, in source language(s) (geographical name) (1) Official name, in source language(s) (protocol name) Short name in English (geographical name) Official name in English (protocol name) Country code (2) Former abbrevi­ation (2)
Belgique/België Royaume de Belgique/
Koninkrijk België
Belgium Kingdom of Belgium BE B
България (*) Република България Bulgaria Republic of Bulgaria BG
Česko Česká republika Czechia Czech Republic CZ
Danmark Kongeriget Danmark Denmark Kingdom of Denmark DK DK
Deutschland Bundesrepublik Deutschland Germany Federal Republic of Germany DE D
Eesti Eesti Vabariik Estonia Republic of Estonia EE
Éire/Ireland Éire/Ireland Ireland Ireland IE IRL
Ελλάδα (*) Ελληνική Δημοκρατία Greece Hellenic Republic EL EL
España Reino de España Spain Kingdom of Spain ES E
France République française France French Republic FR F
Hrvatska Republika Hrvatska Croatia Republic of Croatia HR
Italia Repubblica italiana Italy Italian Republic IT I
Κύπρος (*) Κυπριακή Δημοκρατία Cyprus Republic of Cyprus CY
Latvija Latvijas Republika Latvia Republic of Latvia LV
Lietuva Lietuvos Respublika Lithuania Republic of Lithuania LT
Luxembourg Grand-Duché de Luxembourg Luxembourg Grand Duchy of Luxembourg LU L
Magyarország Magyarország Hungary Hungary HU
Malta Repubblika ta’ Malta Malta Republic of Malta MT
Nederland Koninkrijk der Nederlanden Netherlands Kingdom of the Netherlands NL NL
Österreich Republik Österreich Austria Republic of Austria AT A
Polska Rzeczpospolita Polska Poland Republic of Poland PL
Portugal República Portuguesa Portugal Portuguese Republic PT P
România România Romania Romania RO
Slovenija Republika Slovenija Slovenia Republic of Slovenia SI
Slovensko Slovenská republika Slovakia Slovak Republic SK
Suomi/Finland Suomen tasavalta/
Republiken Finland
Finland Republic of Finland FI FIN
Sverige Konungariket Sverige Sweden Kingdom of Sweden SE S

Latin transliteration: България = Bulgaria; Ελλάδα = Elláda; Κύπρος = Kýpros.

The short name in the source language(s) is used to fix the protocol order and is used in multilingual documents (see Section 7.1.2).

The abbreviation to use = ISO code, except for Greece, for which EL is recommended (instead of the ISO code GR). The former abbreviations (generally taken from the international code for automobiles) were used until the end of 2002.


Do not use ‘Republic of Ireland’. Although this name is found in some documents, it does not have official status.

Use ‘Netherlands’ not Holland, which is only part of the Netherlands (the provinces of North and South Holland); a capital T is not necessary on ‘the’. In tables ‘Netherlands’ will suffice.

Non-EU countries

For non-EU countries, it is also advisable to use the two-character ISO code (ISO 3166 alpha-2).

For the format of presentation (short name, official title, list of ISO codes), see Annexes A5 and A6.

For the recommended order, see Section 7.1.2.

EU-27, acceding state and candidate countries

Acceding state/cCandidate countries

Short name, in source language(s) (geographical name) Short name in English (geographical name)  Official name in English (protocol name) Country code
Bosna i Hercegovina/
Боснa и Херцеговинa
Bosnia and Herzegovina Bosnia and Herzegovina BA
Crna Gora/Црна Гора Montenegro Montenegro ME
Republica Moldova Moldova Republic of Moldova MD
Северна Македонија (1) North Macedonia (2) Republic of North Macedonia (2) MK
Shqipëria Albania Republic of Albania AL
Srbija/Сpбија Serbia Republic of Serbia RS
Türkiye Türkiye
Republic of Türkiye TR
Україна (3) Ukraine Ukraine UA
Latin transliteration: Северна Македонија = Severna Makedonija.
Do not use ‘Northern Macedonia’ or ‘Republic of Northern Macedonia’.
Latin transliteration: Україна = Ukraina.

Official title or short name?

The long form (official title) is used when the state is targeted as a legal entity:

This Decision is addressed to the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
The French Republic is authorised to …
If the recurrence of the name of a state in the text leads to a preference for using the short form, it can be introduced with the phrase ‘hereinafter referred to as …’.

The short form (short name) is used when the state is referred to geographically or economically:

Workers residing in France
Exports from Greece …
For certain states, the long form and the short form are identical:
Central African Republic
Last updated: 7.10.2022
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