What is BIC - mission & vision

What is BIC ?

Founded under the auspices of the International Chamber of Commerce in 1933 as a neutral, non-profit, international organization, BIC’s mission is to enable efficiency in container transportation while promoting safety, security, standardization and sustainability.

BIC continues its active role in the development of sensible standards in the container industry and the promotion of professional dialogue amongst its 2,900+ members, standards bodies, governments and other industry organizations.

BIC holds full consultative status as an NGO at the International Maritime Organization (IMO) is an official Partner Organization of the World Customs Organization (WCO) and holds NGO observer status at the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe UNECE.  BIC staff and board members participate as experts in working groups at numerous international organizations and the BIC is active in conferences, exhibitions and inter-governmental bodies.


BIC has published the BIC Code Register since 1970 and was appointed by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) in 1972 as the industry’s global container prefix registry– a role further endorsed by the World Customs Organization (WCO) through requirements in the Customs Conventions on Containers and the Istanbul Convention. The BIC Code database is consulted thousands of times daily throughout the world.


In 2016, BIC launched the BoxTech Global Container Database, a platform allowing container owners and operators to register their container fleets, making individual container characteristics available to stakeholders throughout the supply chain, and assisting the industry in its shift to digitized processes.

Among other uses, BoxTech supports shippers and forwaders in obtaining tare weights for use in ‘Method 2’​ SOLAS VGM declarations. BoxTech can be consulted at bic-boxtech.org


BIC also serves as the register of the BIC Facility Code, a child code of the UN/Locode based originally on ISO 9897, which is used to identify 17,000 container facilities in over 188 countries. In November 2020, an API was launched to serve both BIC and SMDG codes.


ACEP Database:

BIC also operates the Global ACEP Database (bic-acep.org) under the guidance of the IMO.

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