Metre Convention - TEXT

The Metre Convention

The Convention to “assure the international unification and improvement of the metric system” and its annexed regulations (commonly known as the “Metre Convention”), was signed on 20 May 1875, and amended in 1921. It is an international treaty, the purpose of which was the creation of an international organization called the BIPM.

It is an example of the efforts made by countries in the second-half of the 19th century to establish new forms of intergovernmental cooperation. Other international organizations created during that period are the Central Commission for the Navigation of the Rhine (CCNR) in 1815, the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) in 1865, the Universal Postal Union (UPU) in 1874.

Since then, the aim of the BIPM continues to be to facilitate the standardization of measurements world-wide by enabling Member States to act together on matters related to measurement science.

initial signatories - list

Initial signatories (1875)


  • Germany
  • Argentina
  • Austria-Hungary
  • Belgium
  • Brazil
  • Denmark
  • Spain
  • United States of America
  • France
  • Italy
  • Peru
  • Portugal
  • Russia
  • Sweden and Norway
  • Switzerland
  • Türkiye
  • Venezuela


See also:

Current Member States