Clarification On Chinese Draft Domain Name Regulations

China recently announced they were revising their regulations relating to domain names, particularly those registered outside China. The wording of the new draft could see could see these domain names registered outside China blocked.

But according to a post on Circle ID by by Matt Johnson, Kurt Pritz and Simon Cousins says concerns about the draft regulations “were exaggerated.” A clarification following the original outcry “notes that the previous release had caused consternation among out-of-country businesses and then states that the March 25th release would not affect foreign companies in the normal conduct of business in China.”

Johnson et al note that the “new rules (that are currently out for comment) state that if you want to host a website in China, the domain name must be registered with a registrar in China. But this new draft in no way prohibits the ownership of domains by Chinese registered outside the country.”

“In addition, the rules outline the process for governmental approval of new domain name extensions (such as .vip and .club) in China so that websites can resolve there. I.e., MIIT will consider each new foreign-owned extension that is properly submitted for approval in a serial, “first come, first serve” basis, with Chinese-owned new gTLDs being reviewed before foreign new gTLDs. This is exactly the process that Allegravita (recognizing these regulations were in process) has been taking its clients through for the past few years: licensing new domain name businesses in China as a Wholly Foreign Owned Enterprise and then submitting that license to MIIT.”

“The only significant new rule states that a resolving website that is registered in China must be registered through a registrar that operates its services in China.”

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