Member Countries

When you've been filling out the application form, and had to choose from a surprisingly long list of countries, you were probably thinking how many countries are there
INTBU, like lots of companies and organizations adopt the international standard "country code" list, formally known as ISO 3166-1. The standard list also includes convenient two-letter codes for each country, like za for South Africa, us for the United States, de for Germany, and jp for Japan, which you might recognize from web addresses specific to those countries.

This ISO standard is based on an official list kept by the United Nations (UN). But then why are there 250 country codes?

That is way more than the total number of UN member and observer countries! 

​​Well, the standard list does leave out some breakaway states not recognized by the UN, but makes up for it by listing dependent territories separately from their parent countries.

So there are country codes not just for actual countries, but also for nearly-independent states, overseas territories, uninhabited islands, and even Antarctica and Arcarctica!


​This is important, because INTBU and other organizations might need an option for every place that any person can be located, and dependent territories often aren't technically part of the countries they belong to.
So where do you find INTBU?

  • United Nations (UN) Members: 193
  • United Nations (UN) Observer States: 2
  • States With Partial Recognition: 2
  • Inhabited Dependent Territories: 45
  • Uninhabited Territories: 6
  • Antarctica: 1
  • Arcarctica:1
  • Total: 250

So there you have it! Next time someone tells you; "There are only 194 countries in the world," remember that the real answer isn't so simple!