Egypt and China: First for Internationalised Domains
Egypt and China have stated they will be the f irst to apply for internationalised domain names as part of ICANN’s fast track process. ICANN begins accepting requests for the new TLDs on 16th November 2009.
Egypt is planning to launch “the world’s first Arabic language internet domain”. Egypt’s communications minister, Tarek Kamel, has said that the TLD (top level domain) would be “.masr”, written in the Arabic alphabet, which translates as “.Egypt”, say the BBC.
China’s application is reported by the China Daily who says that the China Network Information Centre (CNNIC) will also apply for a Chinese TLD. The report says CNNIC will apply for the TLD “Zhongguo”(written in pinyin). There are over 388 million net users in China according to Qilin, assistant director of CNNIC in China Daily.
ICANN President Rod Beckstrom described the importance of this change to the global Internet community, by saying “over half the Internet users around the world don’t use a Latin-based script as their native language. IDNs are about making the Internet more global and accessible for everyone.” Once approved, the new internationalised TLDs are expected to come online during 2010.