BIC Codes of Banks in Tanzania

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When it comes to making an international online payment, you will be required to provide a BIC code. It can often leave one confused as to what the Bic Codes refer to. These are the same as SWIFT codes. It is an international banking code for transfer of financial messages. The code is also used for identifying banks all across the world. BIC stands for Bank Identifier Code and SWIFT refers to the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication.

BIC has long been used to refer to Bank Identifier Code, but more recently it has been also referred to as Business Identifier Code. This has been done because of the growing scope of this special code in identifying businesses too. Whichever way it is used or referred to, BIC is managed by the International Organization for Standardization. It has been defined under the ISO9362 standard which is internationally accepted and recognized.

Initially, the code was created for identifying an address over the SWIFT network. But with the name change, it covers a wider scope of financial transactions.

During financial transactions, the BIC codes are used for identifying a particular business, which is mostly a bank. In many countries the bank-identifying code of the BIC is part of the International Bank Account Number or IBAN. It identifies the institution to which the payment has to be made. This part is usually the short form used for the name of the bank.

Some of the most important uses of BIC Codes are as following:

  • Network Address — It is used as an identifier for an institution on the SWIFT network.
  • Payment Postcode — It is also used as a 'phone number' on this network, referring to the origin, the go-between and the destination institution for payment messages.
  • Unambiguous Identifier — The BIC code is also used for identifying an entry because it is a reference to a bank/business. It is used by the Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA) for identifying bank operations in different countries and based on their different schemes.
  • SEPA Coordinates — BIC is also used by SEPA as a payment postcode.

There are 2 formats of BIC Codes. The 11-character code is the full BIC. The other format has 8 characters. It is also referred to as Business Party Identifier. When the 8-digit format is involved, it is assumed that the reference is made to the main office.

SWIFT Standards is a part of the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT). It will handle the listing of the BIC codes. The codes were initially referred to as SWIFT codes or addresses. They are mostly known by this name even though they may now have been standardized as Business Identifier Codes.

It was in 2009 that the scope of the codes was widened to include even institutions which don't have financial profiles. This was when Bank Identifier Code was changed to Business Identifier Code. There are more than 7,000 live codes worldwide which stand for the partners who are linked to the SWIFT network. Besides, there is an additional 10,000 BIC codes used for carrying out manual transactions.



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When it comes to making an international online payment, you will be required to provide a BIC code. It can often leave one confused as to what the Bic Codes refer to. These are the same as SWIFT codes. It is an international banking code for transfer of financial messages. The code is also used for identifying banks all across the world. BIC stands for Bank Identifier Code and SWIFT refers to the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication.

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