At a meeting on 21 March 2005, the board of ICANN approved the delegation of the new .eu top level domain and authorised their CEO, to enter into an agreement with EURid, the organisation selected by the European Commission to operate the .eu registry. The decision was taken following contractual negotiations between ICANN and EURid over the past few months and approval of the agreement by the European Commission.
The board decision sets in motion the next stage whereby IANA (The Internet Assigned Numbers Authority), after seeking approval from the US Department of Commerce puts .eu in the internet root. This is not expected to take more than 10 days.
“Having .eu in the root sets the green light for the launch of .eu” said EURid General Manager, Marc Van Wesemael “Over the next few months we will be working very hard on the final preparations with the aim of launching the .eu Sunrise period later this year”
Next steps to the launch of .eu: EURid is currently working on the full .eu Registration Policy including the full rules and procedures for the so called ‘sunrise period’ which will allow public bodies and holders of prior rights such as trademarks to register in advance of others. The Registration Policy must be approved by the European Commission and be published for two months before starting registrations. Over the coming months the draft will be published on the EURid web site for the comment of interested parties.
Provided the .eu registration policy receives EC approval in time, the .eu sunrise period should be launched before the end of this year. The sunrise period will last for four months after which general registration will begin on a first-come-first-served basis.