Country and currency taxonomies progress to Candidate Recommendation status with improved structure

Posted on September 1, 2023 by Editor

The XBRL International Standards Board (XSB) has approved the promotion of the new Country Code and Currency Code taxonomies to Candidate Recommendation status. These taxonomies provide lists of the ISO codes for countries and currencies, making it easy to use these standard codes in XBRL reports – as required in a wide range of regulatory filings. They will save regulators the task of manually defining and maintaining these lists in their own taxonomies, and will improve the consistency and comparability of XBRL reports. An architecture document has also been released that provides a range of useful information for implementors.

We have made one significant structural improvement since the taxonomies were initially released as a public working draft, with the introduction of a separate ‘common definitions’ taxonomy. As well as allowing the re-use of common components between country and currency code taxonomies, this change decouples the versioning of these technical components from updates to the code lists themselves. More minor changes in the Candidate Recommendation include fixes for duplicate currency names and currency codes that were appearing both in withdrawn and valid lists.

We will be updating the country and currency code taxonomies whenever the underlying ISO currency or country code list is itself updated. When such changes occur, regulators need to make rapid updates. Both the country and currency taxonomies are available in two versions, offering two approaches to these updates. The ‘current’ versions enable users to automatically and immediately update their taxonomies without carrying out any version change at their end, as the taxonomy file URLs will remain constant for all releases. On the other hand, the ‘dated’ versions will require users to make manual updates, allowing full control of the process. We are currently preparing some guidance on selecting between these options, so look out for more news on that soon.

As always, your feedback is welcomed before the taxonomies progress to Proposed Recommendation status. An updated architecture document reflecting the current release, and which also includes information on governance and versioning processes, is now available here. The taxonomy packages for the two country code taxonomies can be found here and here, for the currency code taxonomies here and here, and for the common definitions taxonomy here. (Alternatively, visit taxonomies.xbrl.org and sort by date.)

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