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Isle of Man achieves significant improvement in its international profile 3 April 2006

    The Treasury announced that the International Standards Organisation (ISO) in Geneva has agreed for the first time, to include the Isle of Man in its main data base of distinct geopolitical entities.

    The database concerned is the so called ISO 3166-1 country list. The significance of this list is that it is the definitive list used by numerous countries, organisations and companies when deciding to differentiate and recognise geopolitical entities.

    Perhaps the most immediate and important significance of being included on the list, is that companies selling on the internet use the ISO country list as the list of where people can select as their country of residence. Previously Isle of Man residents have had to choose “United Kingdom” which is neither geographically nor politically correct. Although it will take a little time for software upgrades and new programmes to pick up on the latest ISO list, it should eventually allow Isle of Man residents to choose “Isle of Man”.

    E-Business Director Tim Craine said

    “this is an issue I have been working on for almost 5 years. Soon after I took up my current position I realised that the Isle of Man was at a distinct disadvantage by not being on this list. We were originally allocated “IM” when the Island set up its own postal service back in 1977 but for some reason at that time, we were only placed on the ISO reserve list and not the full list. It has taken until now to persuade a multitude of international organisations that the Isle of Man has a strong case for it’s IM identity to be placed on the full ISO list”

    Treasury Minister Allan Bell said

    “I am delighted that the Island’s case has been recognised by ISO and that we will now be on a level playing field with other countries on the internet and elsewhere. The Island is achieving an increasingly international profile and this latest development will help in this process”

    The case to persuade ISO of the need for a main country list listing was a joint collaborative exercise between the governments of Jersey, Guernsey and the Isle of Man.

    3rd April 2006

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