Formed by the Regional Internet Registries to formalize their cooperative efforts, the NRO exists to protect the unallocated Number Resource pool, to promote and protect the bottom-up policy development process, and to act as a focal point for Internet community input into the RIR system.




NRO Contribution to the
United States Department of Commerce

This statement is made by the Number Resource Organization (NRO), representing the five Regional Internet Registries, and pertains to the Department of Commerceís transition of the technical coordination and management of the Internet domain name and addressing system to the private sector.

The NRO endorses the current model for coordinating the Internet domain name and addressing system and believes this model supports the further growth and evolution of the Internet. This model has proven well-suited to the evolving structure of a global communications community with a significant private sector component, while maintaining openness to civil society and public sector interests. NRO support is given as an independent member of a broader framework of Internet
administration, which ICANN itself is intended to support.

The NRO believes that the Memorandum of Understanding between the Department of Commerce and ICANN should not be renewed, in other words the transition should continue along its path to the eventual completion.

The principles of stability, competition, bottom-up coordination, and representation, as articulated in the 1998 DNS White
Paper remain relevant in the Internet community. ICANN's execution of the IANA function has been critical in supporting the RIRs mission of distributing Internet Protocol (IP) addresses to those who use the Internet.

The NRO believes that no single government should have a special role in the management of Internet Number Resources.† The NRO further advocates that regardless of where ICANN and its regional offices are located, that there be a host country agreement between ICANN and those various host country governments.

†The NRO also serves as ICANNís Address Supporting Organization (ASO), with the NRO Number Council members acting as the ASO Address Council as called for in the ICANN bylaws. This collaboration between ICANN and the NRO, a related but independent organization, demonstrates that ICANN can work with the private sector.

While public sector and governmental participation in ICANN has not been to the satisfaction of all parties, ICANN has stated its continued commitment to refine its practices to include all stakeholders. The NRO welcomes further refinements that could meet the needs of public sector interests including national governments for more meaningful participation in the activities of ICANN. 

Like the Regional Internet Registries, ICANN conducts meetings in diverse geographic areas that are open to all stakeholders. These meetings constitute an essential part of ICANN's global consensus development and outreach efforts and allow all parties to discuss specific issues in a public setting. However, ICANN must develop a strong regional activity in each of its five geographic regions. This regional activity must go beyond a mere public relations presence that exists today. This regional activity must develop and encourage participation in the ICANN process at a regional level, particularly in the areas dominated by developing economies, and provide for regional execution of various ICANN operations.

About the NRO

Formed by the Regional Internet Registries to formalize their cooperative efforts, the NRO exists to protect the unallocated number resource pool, to promote and protect the bottom-up policy development process, and to act as a focal point for Internet community input into the RIR system.

Its members are: AfriNIC, serving the African continent, APNIC, serving the Asia-Pacific region; ARIN, serving Canada, the United States, and several islands in the Caribbean and North Atlantic Ocean; LACNIC, serving Latin America and portions of the Caribbean; and RIPE NCC, serving Europe, the Middle East, and Central Asia.

More information about the NRO is available at www.nro.net.