Is there an agency or commission that oversees the use and distribution of area codes?
#109815. Asked by serpa. (Oct 15 09 1:03 PM)
"Although the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) has attempted to promote common standards among nation states, numbering plans take different formats in different parts of the world. For example, the ITU recommends that member states adopt 00 as their international access code. However, as these recommendations are not binding on member states, some have not, such as the United States, Canada, and other countries and territories participating in the North American Numbering Plan.
The international numbering plan establishes country codes, that is, area codes that denote nations or groups of nations. The E.164 standard regulates country codes at the international level and sets a maximum length limit on a full international phone number. However, it is each country's responsibility to define the numbering within its own network. As a result, regional area codes may be:
A fixed length, e.g., three digits in the United States and Canada; one digit in Australia and New Zealand,
A variable length, e.g., between 2 and 5 in Germany, Argentina and in Austria; between 1 and 5 in Japan; 1 or 2 in Syria and Peru; between 2 and 5 in the United Kingdom, or
Incorporated into the subscriber's number, as is the case in many countries, such as Spain or Norway. This is known as a "closed" telephone numbering plan. In some cases a trunk code (usually 0) must still be dialed, as in Belgium, Italy, Poland, Switzerland, South Africa, and some locations within the NANP. "
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