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The HDX Python Country Library provides utilities to map between country and region codes and names and to match administrative level names from different sources. It also provides utilities for foreign exchange enabling obtaining current and historic FX rates for different currencies.


  1. Information
  2. Countries
  3. Administration Level
  4. Currencies


The library provides country mappings including ISO 2 and ISO 3 letter codes (ISO 3166) and regions using live official data from the UN OCHA feed with fallbacks to an internal static file if there is any problem with retrieving data from the url. (Also it is possible to force the use of the internal static files.) The UN OCHA feed has regex taken from here. with improvements contributed back.

It can exact match English, French, Spanish, Russian, Chinese and Arabic. There is a fuzzy matching for English look up that can handle abbreviations in country names like Dem. for Democratic and Rep. for Republic.

Mapping administration level names from a source to a given base set is also handled including phonetic fuzzy name matching.

It also provides foreign exchange rates and conversion from amounts in local currency to USD and vice-versa. The conversion relies on Yahoo Finance, falling back on currency-api for current rates, and Yahoo Finance falling back on IMF data via IATI (with interpolation) for historic daily rates.

This library is part of the Humanitarian Data Exchange (HDX) project. If you have humanitarian related data, please upload your datasets to HDX.

The code for the library is here. The library has detailed API documentation which can be found in the menu at the top.

Breaking Changes

From 3.5.5, after creating an Adminlevel, call either setup_from_admin_info, setup_from_libhxl_dataset or setup_from_url.

From 3.4.6, Python 3.7 no longer supported

From 3.3.2, major update to foreign exchange code and use of new Yahoo data source

From 3.0.0, only supports Python >= 3.6

Version 2.x.x of the library is a significant change from version 1.x.x which sourced its data from different feeds (UN Stats and the World Bank). Consequently, although most of the api calls work the same way in 2.x.x, the ones that return full country information do so in a different format to 1.x.x. The format they use is a dictionary using Humanitarian Exchange Language (HXL) hashtags as keys.

Description of Utilities


The usage of the country mappings functionality is best illustrated by some examples:

from import Country

Country.countriesdata(use_live=False, country_name_overrides={"PSE": "oPt"})
# Set up using non live data from repo rather and override default country name
# (Leaving out this step will use live data and no overrides)
Country.get_country_name_from_iso3("jpn", use_live=False)  # returns "Japan"
Country.get_country_name_from_iso3("vEn", formal=True)  # returns "the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela"
# uselive=False forces the use of internal files instead of accessing the live feeds.
# It only needs to be supplied to the first call as the data once loaded is held
# in internal dictionaries for future use.
Country.get_country_name_from_iso2("Pl")  # returns "Poland"
Country.get_iso3_country_code("UZBEKISTAN")  # returns "UZB"
Country.get_country_name_from_m49(4)  # returns "Afghanistan"

# performs fuzzy match and returns ("SLE", False). The False indicates a fuzzy rather than exact match.
assert Country.get_iso3_country_code_fuzzy("Czech Rep.")
# returns ("CZE", False)

# Returns dictionary with HXL hashtags as keys. For more on HXL, see
# {"#country+alt+i_ar+name+v_unterm": "اليابان", "#country+alt+i_en+name+v_unterm": "Japan",
# "#country+alt+i_es+name+v_unterm": "Japón (el)", "#country+alt+i_fr+name+v_unterm": "Japon (le)",
# "#country+alt+i_ru+name+v_unterm": "Япония", "#country+alt+i_zh+name+v_unterm": "日本",
# "#country+alt+name+v_dgacm"": "", "#country+alt+name+v_fts": "",
# "#country+alt+name+v_hrinfo_country": "", "#country+alt+name+v_iso": "",
# "#country+alt+name+v_m49": "", "#country+alt+name+v_reliefweb": "",
# "#country+code+num+v_m49": "392", "#country+code+v_fts": "112",
# "#country+code+v_hrinfo_country": "292", "#country+code+v_iso2": "JP",
# "#country+code+v_iso3": "JPN", "#country+code+v_reliefweb": "128",
# "#country+formal+i_en+name+v_unterm": "Japan", "#country+name+preferred": "Japan",
# "#country+name+short+v_reliefweb": "", "#country+regex": "japan", "#date+start": "1974-01-01",
# "#geo+admin_level": "0", "#geo+lat": "37.63209801", "#geo+lon": "138.0812256", "#meta+id": "112",
# "#region+code+intermediate": "", "#region+code+main": "142", "#region+code+sub": "30",
# "#region+intermediate+name+preferred": "", "#region+main+name+preferred": "Asia",
# "#region+name+preferred+sub": "Eastern Asia"}
Country.get_countries_in_region("Channel Islands")
# ["GGY", "JEY"]
# 60
# ["BLZ", "CRI", "GTM", "HND", "MEX", "NIC", "PAN", "SLV"]

Administration Level

The administration level mappings takes input configuration dictionary, admin_config, which defaults to an empty dictionary.

admin_config can have the following optional keys:

countries_fuzzy_try are countries (iso3 codes) for which to try fuzzy matching. Default is all countries. admin_name_mappings is a dictionary of mappings from name to pcode (for where fuzzy matching fails) admin_name_replacements is a dictionary of textual replacements to try when fuzzy matching admin_fuzzy_dont is a list of names for which fuzzy matching should not be tried

Once an AdminLevel object is constructed, one of three setup methods must be called: setup_from_admin_info, setup_from_libhxl_dataset or setup_from_url.

Method setup_from_admin_info takes key admin_info which is a list with values of the form:

{"iso3": "AFG", "pcode": "AF01", "name": "Kabul"}
{"iso3": "AFG", "pcode": "AF0101", "name": "Kabul", "parent": "AF01"}

Dictionaries pcode_to_name and pcode_to_iso3 are populated in the AdminLevel object. parent is optional, but if provided enables lookup of location names by both country and parent rather than just country which should help with any name clashes. It also results in the population of a dictionary in the AdminLevel object pcode_to_parent.

Method setup_from_libhxl_dataset takes a libhxl Dataset object, while setup_from_url takes a URL which defaults to a resource in the global p-codes dataset on HDX.

These methods also have optional parameter countryiso3s which is a tuple or list of country ISO3 codes to be read or None if all countries are desired.

Examples of usage:

AdminLevel.looks_like_pcode("YEM123")  # returns True
AdminLevel.looks_like_pcode("Yemen")  # returns False
AdminLevel.looks_like_pcode("YEME123")  # returns False
adminlevel = AdminLevel(config)
adminlevel.setup_from_admin_info(admin_info, countryiso3s=("YEM",))
adminlevel.get_pcode("YEM", "YEM030", logname="test")  # returns ("YE30", True)
adminlevel.get_pcode("YEM", "Al Dhale"e / الضالع")  # returns ("YE30", False)
adminlevel.get_pcode("YEM", "Al Dhale"e / الضالع", fuzzy_match=False)  # returns (None, True)
assert admintwo.get_pcode("AFG", "Kabul", parent="AF01") == ("AF0101", True)

There is basic admin 1 p-code length conversion by default. A more advanced p-code length conversion can be activated by calling load_pcode_formats which takes a URL that defaults to a resource in the global p-codes dataset on HDX:

admintwo.get_pcode("YEM", "YEM30001")  # returns ("YE3001", True)

The length conversion can be further enhanced by supplying either parent AdminLevel objects in a list or lists of p-codes per parent admin level:

admintwo.get_pcode("NER", "NE00409")  # returns ("NER004009", True)
admintwo.get_pcode("NER", "NE00409")  # returns ("NER004009", True)


Various functions support the conversion of monetary amounts to USD. Note that the returned values are cached to reduce network usage which means that the library is unsuited for use where rates are expected to update while the program is running:

Currency.setup(fallback_historic_to_current=True, fallback_current_to_static=True, log_level=logging.INFO)
currency = Country.get_currency_from_iso3("usa")  # returns "USD"
assert Currency.get_current_rate("usd")  # returns 1
Currency.get_current_value_in_usd(10, currency)  # returns 10
gbprate = Currency.get_current_value_in_usd(10, "gbp")
assert gbprate != 10
Currency.get_current_value_in_currency(gbprate, "GBP")  # returns 10
date = parse_date("2020-02-20")
Currency.get_historic_rate("gbp", date)  # returns 0.7735000252723694
Currency.get_historic_rate("gbp", parse_date("2020-02-20 00:00:00 NZST"),
                           ignore_timeinfo=False)  # returns 0.76910001039505
Currency.get_historic_value_in_usd(10, "USD", date)  # returns 10
Currency.get_historic_value_in_usd(10, "gbp", date)  # returns 13.002210200027791
Currency.get_historic_value_in_currency(10, "gbp", date)  # returns 7.735000252723694
Currency.get_historic_rate("gbp", parse_date("2020-02-20 00:00:00 NZST",
                           timezone_handling=2), ignore_timeinfo=False)
# == 0.76910001039505

Historic daily rates can be made to fall back to current rates if desired (this is not the default). It is possible to pass in a Retrieve object to Currency.setup() to allow the downloaded files from the secondary sources to be saved or previously downloaded files to be reused and to allow fallbacks from current rates to a static file eg.

Currency.setup(retriever, ..., fallback_historic_to_current=True, fallback_current_to_static=True)