Chaos is reigning not just in Britain over their attempts to enact legislation for the United Kingdom to leave the European Union, but also for businesses who work across both the UK and other EU countries. And one of these is EURid who have had to delay once again their plans for enforcing rules which would see British registrants of .eu domain names mostly become ineligible to hold their domain names the day after Brexit is enacted.
In an announcement on their “Brexit notice” page, EURid, the .eu registry, notes “Following the recent developments in the UK withdrawal scenario, the entire plan outlined below is on hold. We will keep you informed as soon as we receive further instructions from the European Commission.”
The delay is a blessing for some registrants in the UK that have business connections in the remaining EU countries or have citizenship of a EU country as it means they can update their details and still keep their .eu domain name. But for the rest it’s at worst a disaster, at best an inconvenience.
.eu has been haemorrhaging registrations to British registrants over the last 2 years. Registrations have declined from 318,668 at the end of June 2017 to 304,133 at the end of June 2018 and then in the 12 months to the end of June 2019, registrations to United Kingdom registrants almost halved, declining 46.7% to 162,287. Despite the collapse, the UK remained the sixth largest country of registrant origin as of 30 June.
Assuming Brexit happens, British .eu registrants will shortly thereafter lose their domain names unless the registrant has citizenship of a European Union country or for a business has an office in a EU country. Currently media reports are predicting that the likely Brexit date, if it happens, is 31 January 2020, if it is agreed among leaders of EU countries. If leaders are in agreement this will be made public on Friday (25 October), but if they are in disagreement, there will need to be a summit on Monday. So assuming the UK leaves the EU on 31 January, on 1 February British based .eu registrants will be ineligible to hold their .eu domain names “and their domain names will be WITHDRAWN” 2 months later.