the contract enables the Registry to set the .eu mechanism in motion
The “.eu” top-level domain (TLD) will bring EU single market benefits to the age of eBusiness, provide new Internet space to European companies and citizens, and promote an EU internet identity.
It will be run by a private, non-profit organization known as EURid (www.eurid.org), under a contract signed in Brussels on Tuesday 12 October.
EURid is the organization entrusted with the implementation and management of the “.eu” TLD following a call for expressions of interest published in September 2002. EURid, which takes the form of a Belgian non-profit association, is a consortium of Belgian, Italian and Swedish bodies that run national TLDs in their respective countries.
The Commission/EURid contract enables the Commission to fulfil its obligations under the .eu Regulations and the Registry to set the .eu mechanism in motion, so as to permit the registration of domain names as soon as possible.
Open for Business in 2005
The “.eu” TLD opens for business in 2005. Before users can begin registering “.eu” domain names, the following steps are required:
- the Commission will ask the Internet Corporation For Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) to introduce the new .eu TLD;
- the Registry will accredit registrars – companies that can register domains on behalf of end users, under competitive market rules;
- providers of Alternative Dispute Resolution services will have to be enlisted,
- the requisite technical infrastructure and software will have to be put in place, and
- the Registry must approve a registration policy, in consultation with the Commission and other interested parties.
Following these steps, the Commission expects the .eu domain to start with a phased registration period in the third quarter of 2005, in which certain right holders, such as trade mark holders, can register domain names. Registration will then be opened up to all other eligible parties.
The regulations establishing the .eu domain (733/2002 and 874/2004) lay down rules for: eligibility, requests for domain name registration, accreditation of registrars, languages and geographical concepts, registration of names corresponding to prior rights, speculative and abusive registrations, and a dispute resolution procedure.
Any individual resident within the European Community, any undertaking having its registered office, central administration or principal place of business within the Community and any organisation established within the Community will have the right to register .eu domain names. The regulations foresee an initial phased registration period before registration is opened to all other eligible parties.