Afilias, announced that the China Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) has issued a formal statement that awards the .INFO, .MOBI, .RED, .PRO and .KIM Top Level Domains (TLDs) a license for sale in China as required by the latest MIIT guidelines.
Each TLD must be licensed by MIIT to be eligible for sale in China. Only 15 ASCII TLDs (out of over 1000 worldwide) have been licensed so far, and Afilias now operates one third of these TLDs.
“Afilias is proud that the Afilias China Registry Service, which supports these 5 TLDs, has proven to be among the few that are safe enough to meet MIIT’s high technical standards for licensing,” said Kun Qian, Afilias’ China Country Head. “Afilias now looks forward to working closely with our Chinese registrar partners to expand the market with our broad portfolio of globally recognized TLDs.”
“China’s domain name market is already the world’s second biggest, with over 40M registrations,” said Roland LaPlante, Senior Vice President of Afilias, “and more consumer choice will help it grow faster. As the first western registry operator to have licensed, in-country operations, Afilias provides more choices and an extra measure of confidence for Chinese registrars and registrants alike. Companies and others looking to tap new markets and reach broader audiences should add (or switch to) globally appealing addresses such as .INFO and .PRO, which are intuitively meaningful and have more names available than legacy TLDs like .COM.”
Here is what Afilias said about its 5 extensions:
“These 5 TLDs will serve the needs of both start-ups and established organizations that need a globally appealing internet presence to compete in today’s marketplace. Chinese firms typically have names in localized addresses, but many of them have aspirations beyond the Chinese market—these firms need a global address that sets them apart as a bigger player. For example,
- .INFO means “information,” and is especially good for tourism (www.spain.info and www.frommers.info), transportation (www.mta.info), causes (www.ChildrenOfSyria.info), and financial (www.cloud-tax.info). Every business needs to get its information to the market!
- .PRO says “professional,” and embraces technologies (www.rackspace.pro), staffing and human resources (www.brightowl.pro), design (www.imagedesign.pro) and even creating your own internet radio station (www.airtime.pro).
- .MOBI means you are mobile-enabled, and helps you reach mobile consumers such as baseball fans (www.mlb.mobi), news junkies (www.your4state.mobi), job seekers (www.careerjunction.mobi), and college applicants (www.bucknell.mobi).
- .RED associates you with good fortune, as illustrated by podcast advice on successful selling (www.salesman.red), investment advice (www.trp.red), and free images (www.Freeimages.red).
- .KIM appeals to the Korean market, as shown at www.johnny.kim and the Agario game www.agario.kim.”
“Registrants (website owners) in China can now register INFO, MOBI, PRO, RED and KIM names with confidence, as the formal license has now been authorized. This will reassure the millions of Chinese businesses, organizations and individuals who need reliable, globally recognizable internet addresses that they can depend upon (note that non-licensed TLDs may be subject to suspension at any time).
Registrars (who sell websites/domain names at retail) may have similar confidence as they offer these TLDs for sale to their customers. By securely accessing the Afilias China Registry Service, registrars will enable all new registrations to be compliant upon registration, and will be able to complete the compliance process quickly and easily for the hundreds of thousands of names already registered in these TLDs in China. Afilias has provided detailed technical instructions to all interested registrars, and will provide 24×7 service as usual to assist in the upgrade.
The licensing of these five (5) TLDs clears the way for Afilias to submit another 14 TLDs for approval. These include other colors such as .blue and .green, niche TLDs such as .pet, .ski and .organic, and special purpose TLDs like .promo. Afilias is preparing the required documentation and expects it to be ready for MIIT inspection in the coming weeks.
Importantly, Afilias also provides registry services in support of clients who operate over 200 TLDs, including country codes, “dotBrands” and other generic terms. Many of these are also planning to pursue licensing in China, and the Afilias China Registry Service is now proven able to support their applications. We look forward to working with our clients and MIIT to expand domain choice even further for Chinese registrants and registrars.”