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Afnic calls for a clarification of the role of the ITU on the Internet

Home > Observatory and resources > News > Afnic calls for a clarification of the role of the ITU on the Internet


As part of a public consultation launched by the General Directorate for Competitiveness, Industry and Services, Afnic has stated its position on the proposed review of a major international treaty for international telecommunication networks, and potentially for the Internet.  

The International Telecommunications Regulations establish the main principles governing the interconnection and interoperability of telecommunications networks worldwide. It is backed by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), a specialized agency of the United Nations in charge of telecommunications, involving 193 countries and more than 700 private sector organizations, associations and universities.

At the World Conference on International Telecommunications to be held in Dubai from 3 to 14 December 2012, the Member States of the ITU will be in charge of reviewing this treaty.


The issues at stake at the conference

  • The scope of applicability of the Treaty and its key role in the proper development of the Internet;
  • The recognition of the contribution of the ITU in these actions and its potential contribution in reducing the digital divide;
  • The role played by the organizations dedicated to the technical operation of the Internet, and their relationship with that of the ITU.


Afnic believes that this treaty, which has existed since 1988, has played a positive role in the development of the Internet as we know it today. The registry, however, has cautioned against extending the compulsory nature of the technical norms and standards developed by the ITU to other areas. On the other hand, it has called for an improvement in the coordination between this specialized agency of the United Nations and the technical bodies of the Internet, and an enhanced fight against the international digital divide.


To read Afnic’s reply


To consult the current text of the ITRs (French version)


About Afnic

Afnic is the acronym for Association Française pour le Nommage Internet en Coopération, the French Network Information Centre. The registry has been appointed by the French government to manage domain names under the .fr Top Level Domain. Afnic also manages the .re (Reunion Island), .pm (Saint-Pierre and Miquelon), .tf (French Southern and Antarctic Territories), .wf (Wallis and Futuna) and .yt (Mayotte) French Overseas TLDs.

In addition to managing French TLDs, Afnic’s role is part of a wider public interest mission, which is to contribute on a daily basis, thanks to the efforts of its teams and its members, to a secure and stable internet, open to innovation and in which the French internet community plays a leading role. As part of that mission, Afnic, a non-profit organization, has committed to devoting 11% of its Revenues from managing .fr Top Level Domain to actions of general interest, in particular by transferring €1.3 million each year to the Afnic Foundation for Digital Solidarity.
Afnic is also the back-end registry for the companies as well as local and regional authorities that have chosen to have their own TLD, such as .paris, .bzh, .alsace, .corsica, .mma, .ovh, .leclerc and .sncf.

Established in 1997 and based in Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines, Afnic currently has nearly 90 employees.