.AL Rules Liberalised To Allow Domain Registrations By Foreign Companies

The policies for registering, renewing, deactivating and changing Whois information for .AL domain names is changing as of 1 May and will be performed by registrars authorised by the Albanian Electronic and Postal Communication Authority (AKEP). The new regulation sets 1 May as the date when the accreditation process will begin.

The new administrative procedures will also lead to a decrease in the official fees for registering new and renewing existing domain names.

The changes will also liberalise the registration of .al domains by allowing foreign companies to register domains provided they can prove they do business in their countries. Until now only to Albanian citizens and entities or foreign companies that had their subsidiaries in the Albanian territory could register .al domains.

Before the amendments, foreign companies were not entitled to register the ccTLDs in their own names, even if they successfully challenged the Albanian owners that had registered and/or used a domain name similar to theirs.

The background to the changes comes about from amendments introduced to the Regulation on the Registration and Administration of .al Domain Names and Subdomains on 23 January, 2013 by AKEP, the registry for .al. The amendments outlined administrative procedures and technical requirements for the domain name registration. The amendments will come into force on 1 May, 2013.