Government involvement in ccTLD administration


Version 1.0, 2002-03-26, 32 entries
(See also the summarised ccTLD table)
Send updates to <ant at internet dot org dot za>

Andorra (.ad)

The Andorra NIC is managed by the local WIPO member.

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Austria (.at)

Among other persons from the local Internet community, the Austrian GAC representative and a member of the regulatory agency have been invited by the registry to take part in the policy body, and do actively participate in an advisory role. Other than that, the Austrian government does not involve itself in the .at registry operation.

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Australia (.au)

In Australia, the .au Domain Administration (auDA) was formed in 1999. This organisation was developed by Internet community volunteers with the support of local industry associations (Electronic Frontiers, Internet Society, Internet Industry Association, etc.), existing registrars, and the National Office of the Information Economy (NOIE). auDA is a non-profit, self-regulatory body.

 The Australian government determined that a self-regulatory body should meet the certain objectives. Specifically, it must:

 In addition, existing legislation was amended in December 2000 to provide the government with a mechanism of taking over control of  the administration of the domain should this, for some reason, become necessary. It is not expected that the government will become more pro-active in domain administration, but it is positioned to intervene more readily as the sector matures.

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Switzerland (.ch)

The Federal Office for Communications regards itself authoritative for domain names because they consider domain names as addressing elements and addressing elements fall under federal law. They have delegated management to us (SWITCH) and there are contracts and a decree formalizing this.

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China (.cn)

China Internet Network Information Center (CNNIC for short) was founded on Jun. 3rd 1997. CNNIC is a non-profit organization run by the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS). The Ministry of Information Industry has entrusted the Computer Network Information Center (CNIC, one of the CAS research institutes) to run CNNIC.

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Christmas Islands (.cx)

The Australian Government has endorsed Dot CX (a non-profit company) as the authority for the administration of the .cx ccTLD. A December 2000 amendment to the Telecommunications Act of 1997 provides the government with a mechanism to transfer the management of the .cx domain to the Australian Communications Authority, so that the administration of .cx is still subject to the ultimate authority of the Australian government.

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Czech Republic (.cz)

The .cz ccTLD is operated by an association of ISP's without any legislation support.

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Germany (.de)

In Germany the government is not officially involved, neither by legislation nor by facts. Nevertheless DENIC has ongoing and regular talks with governmental reps about various issues.

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Spain (.es)

The .es registry is managed by a Public Corporation Entity depending from the Ministry of Science and Telecommunications.

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Finland (.fi)

The Finland ccTLD was previously operated by a private telecoms company, KPN Qwest Finland but was transferred to the jurisdiction of FICORA, the Finnish Communications Regulatory Authority, in 1997. The preparation of the administrative changes was made in co-operation with the Internet operators and the Ministry of Transport and Communications.

There is formal legislation governing the operation of the .fi ccTLD, covering the following issues:

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France (.fr)

The AFNIC (French Network Information Center), is a non-profit making organization. It was created jointly in December 1997 by the INRIA and the Government, represented by the Ministries of Telecommunications, Industry and Research.

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The Gambia (.gm)

There is currently no government involvement in the administration of the .gm ccTLD, but the government is keen to bring the administration of .gm under the control of Gamtel. Requests from The Gambian government to ICANN for assistance in transferring the domain have not been successful, since the .gm domain is currently being run efficiently from both a technical and a procedural point of view.

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South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands (.gs):

The goverment is not involved.

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Guatemala (.gt)

In the case of .GT, we are currently operating without government involvement. However, in Feb, 2000 the government did attempt to take over.

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Indonesia (.id)

Operates without any legislation or government interference. Talks are underway with various parts of government to get them involved in the process.

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Ireland (.ie)

The Irish government has enacted legislation which allows it to take control of the .ie ccTLD, but is content to let the existing administration continue operation. The legislation is a fall-back in case there is ever a crisis in the operation of the ccTLD.

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Israel (.il)

In Israel, the registry operates without legislation or government involvement (though with government's blessing). There has been an analysis by the Ministry of Justice a while ago, whether there's any need for legislation, and the decision was that there is no such need.

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Kenya (.ke)

A procees is currently underway to build consensus and support among stakeholders for a takeover of the technical contact  responsibility for .KE from Randy Bush of the USA. The proposed plan of action is to have a not-for-profit entity (keNIC) which has stakeholders on the Board and a provision for associate memberships for any organisations/constitutucies that feel they have something to say/do.

The proposed constitution of the Board is 9 members, six representing Internet community and business interests, and three from government. The current position is that this entity (keNIC) will come up with the policies that govern the cctld's operation from a perspective of best practice and contextual relevance.

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Lebanon (.lb)

The Lebanese government does not involve itself with .lb registry operation.

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Lithuania (.lt)

The government is not involved in domain name issues.

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Montserrat (.ms)

The goverment is not involved.

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Mexico (.mx)

In 2001, the Mexican congress held a discussion of domain name issues from an intellectual property perspective. The discussion was whether the domains should be considered as a distinctive sign, defined on the intellectual property law.

One of the resolutions resulting from this debate was that the Mexican government should give official recognition to NIC.MX, the existing .MX ccTLD.

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New Zealand (.nz)

A May 1999 report develop by the Ministry of Economic Development had the following to say about the administration of the .NZ ccTLD: "The Internet Society of New Zealand (ISOCNZ) has responsibility for administration of the Internet in New Zealand including management of the .nz domain and responsibility for registration of domain names in New Zealand. For historical and practical reasons, ISOCNZ exercises a monopoly control over the registry. Nevertheless, because of the existence of generic domains which are open to registration of domain names by New Zealanders, there is in this respect, a form of competition. It appears that the domain name system in New Zealand is competitive, well organised, properly administered, professionally serviced, and offers a high quality of service at a reasonable cost."

The report thus concludes that: "There are no indications that there is a need for the Government to introduce sector specific regulation or control mechanisms in relation to the Internet.

Peter Dengate Thrush, adds: "There is no law in New Zealand, partly because we have explained that control of the .nz entry is outside their control, and in the hands of the US Government."

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Peru (.pe)

In Peru, legislation was enacted to transfer control of the .pe domain to a government department. Following lobbying by the local Internet community, this legislation was later withdrawn.

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Papua New Guinea (.pg)

The .pg cctld is administered and managed by a university. The operation is very much limited to registration of domains names in country only.  It is not commercialised. The Government has no say in this operation but are kept informed of any
developments that take place.

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Philippines (.ph)

PH has no government involvement. There is a bill that says that the Domain Name System should be run for the benefit of the public, but there is no specific mention of the PH Domain and other gTLD domains, and if any regulation is ever passed with regards to the PH domain, it is expected that these regulations will also apply to gTLD domains. (e.g. if they tax PH domain sales, it is expected that gTLD domain sales in the Philippines will also be taxed).

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Sweden (.se)

In Sweden there is currently no goverment involvement in the registry. They had a comittee looking in the issue in 1998. They put forward their report publicly in April 2000. Their recommendation was that we should sign an agreement with the goverment according to the GAC principals. The report was put out for public consultation in 2000 and there was quite a
strong opposition to this recommendation since we are not used to have agreements with goverments in our country. Private entities relations with goverments are settled through legislation, which has to pass parliament. The Foundation which runs .se itself opposed the recommendation heavily since it would have meant nationalisation and that has to take place in accordance with our constitution.

The board of trustees in the foundation are appointed by:

Our government has now appointed a new committe that will probably put forward their report late this year. The government today realise that they can't pass legislation that would put our registry in a worse position than other registries since the Internet is boundless. It's very likely that we will get some sort of legislation, however light, which gives the government the possibility to step in if we were to fail in a severe manner. But the possibilities for intervention will be clear in law and can therefore be challanged in court.

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Ukraine (.ua)

The .ua domain is operated by a private company which does not have government representation (i.e., no board members who are government officials.) Dispute resolution is handled accordingly to dispute policy established, through third-party arbitration or courts. There is an ongoing interest from security and telecommunication departments of the Ukrainian government in the operation of Internet in general and the domain system in particular, but there is no direct and immediate control over operations.

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United Kingdom (.uk)

Nominet UK is a not-for-profit Internet Domain Name Registry. The Company acts as trustee for .uk Domain Names on behalf of the Internet community. Nominet is not a regulatory body.

Nominet is acknowledged by the UK Government as the manager of the .uk country code Top Level Domain. Nominet is in regular contact with UK Government departments, who increasingly recognise the Domain Name System as a critical part of the countries commercial infrastructure.

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Uruguay (.uy)

The government is not involved in domain name issues (for the time being).

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Virgin Islands (British) (.vg)

The goverment is not involved.

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Vanuatu (.vu)

No involvement at all from Vanautu Goverment.

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