What is UN/EDIFACT Standard and Messages?

UN/EDIFACT (United Nations/Electronic Data Interchange for Administration, Commerce, and Transport is the international standard that was developed by the United Nations). Comprise a set of internationally agreed standards, directo­ries, and guidelines for the electronic interchange of structured data, between independent computerized information systems. The work of maintenance and further development of this standard is done through the United Nations Center for Trade Facilitation and Electronic Business (UN/CEFACT) under the UN Economic Commission for Europe.

EDIFACT has served as the default international EDI standard for several decades and is largely used throughout Europe.

EDIFACT Message Structure

An EDIFACT message represents a single business document. – For example, an ORDRSP file represents a Purchase Order note. Each message has a six-letter identifier that shows the short name of the message.

Any document in the UN / EDIFACT standard has a hierarchical structure. The entire electronic document is called a message. A message consists of data groups combined in some way, for example, a data group describing customs payments, a group of data describing the attributes of documents, etc. In turn, the group consists of typical data segments that describe document attributes in more detail. The standard provides about 200 different types of segments from which messages are composed. The segments themselves also have a hierarchical structure and consist of data elements that can be simple (data field) and composite (usually 2-3 data fields).

The following is the structure of an EDIFACT transmission:

  • Service String Advice
  • Interchange Header
  • Functional Group Header
  • Message Header
  • User Data Segments
  • Message Trailer
  • Functional Group Trailer
  • Interchange Trailer

See below for an example of an EDIFACT message used to answer a flight ticket (FRA-JFK-MIA) availability request:

UNA:+.? '
















Benefits of UN/EDIFACT

UN/EDIFACT allows real-time electronic transactions and accelerates the interactions between trading partners.

3 main benefits of UN/EDIFACT standards are,

  1. Accuracy – Eliminates human errors that are inevitable when manually entering the data
  2. Improve Cashflow – Reducing paper-based processing will in turn reduce your business administrative costs and save thousands of dollars for business
  3. Efficiency – Large volumes of data can be transferred within minutes thus improving overall operational efficiency



The UN/EDIFACT standard provides a set of syntax rules to structure, an interactive exchange protocol, and provides a set of standard messages which allow multi-country and multi-industry exchange of electronic business documents. EDIFACT is widely used across Europe, mainly since many companies adopted it very early on. EDIFACT has seen some adoption in the ASPAC region, however, there are currently more XML-based standards being used in this region today.

Full list of UN/EDIFACT document standard messages is provided below,


Application Reference Message Type
APERAK Application error and acknowledgement message
AUTHOR Authorization message
AVLREQ Availability request – interactive message
AVLRSP Availability response – interactive message
BALANC Balance message
BANSTA Banking status message
BAPLIE Bayplan/stowage plan occupied and empty locations message
BAPLTE Bayplan/stowage plan total numbers message
BERMAN Berth management message
BMISRM Bulk marine inspection summary report message
BOPBNK Bank transactions and portfolio transactions report message
BOPCUS Balance of payment customer transaction report message
BOPDIR Direct balance of payment declaration message
BOPINF Balance of payment information from customer message
BUSCRD Business credit report message
CALINF Vessel call information message
CASINT Request for legal administration action in civil proceedings message
CASRES Legal administration response in civil proceedings message
CHACCO Chart of accounts message
CLASET Classification information set message
CNTCND Contractual conditions message
COACSU Commercial account summary message
COARRI Container discharge/loading report message
CODECO Container gate-in/gate-out report message
CODENO Permit expiration/clearance ready notice message
COEDOR Container stock report message
COHAOR Container special handling order message
COLREQ Request for a documentary collection message
COMDIS Commercial dispute message
CONAPW Advice on pending works message
CONDPV Direct payment valuation message
CONDRA Drawing administration message
CONDRO Drawing organization message
CONEST Establishment of contract message
CONITT Invitation to tender message
CONPVA Payment valuation message
CONQVA Quantity valuation message
CONRPW Response of pending works message
CONTEN Tender message
CONWQD Work item quantity determination message
COPARN Container announcement message
COPAYM Contributions for payment
COPINO Container pre-notification message
COPRAR Container discharge/loading order message
COREOR Container release order message
COSTCO Container stuffing/stripping confirmation message
COSTOR Container stuffing/stripping order message
CREADV Credit advice message
CREEXT Extended credit advice message
CREMUL Multiple credit advice message
CUSCAR Customs cargo report message
CUSDEC Customs declaration message
CUSEXP Customs express consignment declaration message
CUSPED Periodic customs declaration message
CUSREP Customs conveyance report message
CUSRES Customs response message
DEBADV Debit advice message
DEBMUL Multiple debit advice message
DEBREC Debts recovery message
DELFOR Delivery schedule message
DELJIT Delivery just in time message
DESADV Dispatch advice message
DESTIM Equipment damage and repair estimate message
DGRECA Dangerous goods recapitulation message
DIRDEB Direct debit message
DIRDEF Directory definition message
DMRDEF Data maintenance request definition message
DMSTAT Data maintenance status report/query message
DOCADV Documentary credit advice message
DOCAMA Advice of an amendment of a documentary credit message
DOCAMI Documentary credit amendment information message
DOCAMR Request for an amendment of a documentary credit message
DOCAPP Documentary credit application message
DOCARE Response to an amendment of a documentary credit message
DOCINF Documentary credit issuance information message
ENTREC Accounting entries message
FINCAN Financial cancellation message
FINPAY Multiple interbank funds transfer message
FINSTA Financial statement of an account message
GENRAL General purpose message
GESMES Generic statistical message
HANMOV Cargo/goods handling and movement message
ICASRP Insurance claim assessment and reporting message
ICSOLI Insurance claim solicitor’s instruction message
IFCSUM Forwarding and consolidation summary message
IFTCCA Forwarding and transport shipment charge calculation message
IFTDGN Dangerous goods notification message
IFTFCC International transport freight costs and other charges message
IFTIAG Dangerous cargo list message
IFTICL Cargo insurance claims message
IFTMAN Arrival notice message
IFTMBC Booking confirmation message
IFTMBF Firm booking message
IFTMBP Provisional booking message
IFTMCA Consignment advice message
IFTMCS Instruction contract status message
IFTMFR International Forwarding And Transport
IFTMIN Instruction message
IFTRIN Forwarding and transport rate information message
IFTSAI Forwarding and transport schedule and availability information me
IFTSTA International multimodal status report message
IFTSTQ International multimodal status request message
IHCEBI Interactive health insurance eligibility and benefits inquiry and
IHCLME Health care claim or encounter request and response – interactive
IMPDEF EDI implementation guide definition message
INFCON Infrastructure condition message
INFENT Enterprise accounting information message
INSDES Instruction to dispatch message
INSPRE Insurance premium message
INSREQ Inspection request message
INSRPT Inspection report message
INTCHG Interchange Control Structures
INVOIC Invoice message
INVRPT Inventory report message
IPPOAD Insurance policy administration message
IPPOMO Motor insurance policy message
ISENDS Intermediary system enablement or disablement message
ITRRPT In transit report detail message
JAPRES Job application result message
JINFDE Job information demand message
JOBAPP Job application proposal message
JOBCON Job order confirmation message
JOBMOD Job order modification message
JOBOFF Job order message
JUPREQ Justified payment request message
LEDGER Ledger message
LREACT Life reinsurance activity message
LRECLM Life reinsurance claims message
MEDPID Person identification message
MEDPRE Medical prescription message
MEDREQ Medical service request message
MEDRPT Medical service report message
MEDRUC Medical resource usage and cost message
MEQPOS Means of transport and equipment position message
MOVINS Stowage instruction message
MSCONS Metered services consumption report message
ORDCHG Purchase order change request message
ORDERS Purchase order message
ORDRSP Purchase order response message
OSTENQ Order status enquiry message
OSTRPT Order status report message
PARTIN Party information message
PASREQ Travel tourism and leisure product application status request – i
PASRSP Travel tourism and leisure product application status response –
PAXLST Passenger list message
PAYDUC Payroll deductions advice message
PAYEXT Extended payment order message
PAYMUL Multiple payment order message
PAYORD Payment order message
PRICAT Price/sales catalogue message
PRIHIS Pricing history message
PROCST Project cost reporting message
PRODAT Product data message
PRODEX Product exchange reconciliation message
PROINQ Product inquiry message
PROSRV Product service message
PROTAP Project tasks planning message
PRPAID Insurance premium payment message
QALITY Quality data message
QUOTES Quote message
RDRMES Raw data reporting message
REBORD Reinsurance bordereau message
RECADV Receiving advice message
RECALC Reinsurance calculation message
RECECO Credit risk cover message
RECLAM Reinsurance claims message
RECORD Reinsurance core data message
REGENT Registration of enterprise message
RELIST Reinsured objects list message
REMADV Remittance advice message
REPREM Reinsurance premium message
REQDOC Request for document message
REQOTE Request for quote message
RESETT Reinsurance settlement message
RESMSG Reservation message
RESREQ Reservation request – interactive message
RESRSP Reservation response – interactive message
RETACC Reinsurance technical account message
RETANN Announcement for returns message
RETINS Instruction for returns message
RPCALL Repair call message
SAFHAZ Safety and hazard data message
SANCRT International movement of goods governmental regulatory message
SKDREQ Schedule request – interactive message
SKDUPD Schedule update – interactive message
SLSFCT Sales forecast message
SLSRPT Sales data report message
SOCADE Social administration message
SSIMOD Modification of identity details message
SSRECH Worker’s insurance history message
SSREGW Notification of registration of a worker message
STATAC Statement of account message
STLRPT Settlement transaction reporting message
SUPCOT Superannuation contributions advice message
SUPMAN Superannuation maintenance message
SUPRES Supplier response message
TANSTA Tank status report message
TAXCON Tax control message
TIQREQ Travel tourism and leisure information inquiry request – interactive
TIQRSP Travel tourism and leisure information inquiry response – interactive
TPFREP Terminal performance message
TSDUPD Timetable static data update – interactive message
TUPREQ Travel, tourism and leisure data update request – interactive message
TUPRSP Travel, tourism and leisure data update response – interactive message
UTILMD Utilities master data message
UTILTS Utilities time series message
VATDEC Value added tax message
VESDEP Vessel departure message
WASDIS Waste disposal information message
WKGRDC Work grant decision message
WKGRRE Work grant request message


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