Registries wanting to sell their wares to Chinese registrants are once again facing a tightening of the country’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT)’s regulations.
A few days ago, on July 6, the Ministry published a notice excluding registries that do not hold a license from MIIT from operating in China. The notice warns that from August, MIIT will ramp up its efforts to ensure that registries comply with the regulation through a new “enforcement initiative”.
As usual with Chinese regulations, the exact rules aren’t very clear. The notice refers to a previous MIIT publication listing those registries and TLDs that are approved for sale in China.
This seems to imply that for Chinese registrars to carry TLDs and offer them to their customers, they must be part of this list. The notice itself is sent to Chinese registrars and they are responsible for enforcing these rules.
Alibaba Registry’s Head of Policy and Compliance Pam Little has the following interpretation of the rules: “Registrars will not be allowed to accept new registrations or in-bound transfers from another Chinese registrar if the TLD in question has not received the MIIT approval, and if a registrar has been carrying a non-approved TLD, the TLD needs to be taken down but the registrar may continue to accept renewals of registered domains in that TLD.”