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Update 3/29/19: Given that the manner of Great Britain's exit from the European Union remains unclear, EURid is freezing its plans for .EU domains with a GB country code until further notice. In an update on its website, stresses that it is awaiting official information from the EU in order to proceed with the planned procedure. It will then also inform the affected owners, he says.

.eu domains became available for registration in December 2005 and since then they have been a very good choice for those doing business in Europe. If you too have chosen such a domain, you are well aware of its benefits in terms of branding and targeting.

However, there are some developments you need to take into account and arise from Britain's imminent exit from the European Union. We always want to keep you informed in an accurate and timely manner, so that's what we will do in this case too! If you are an administrator of .eu domains that are affected, you already know what we are referring to, as we have personally sent you a relevant e-mail.

Brexit and the .EU domains affected

In 2016, British citizens voted 52% in favour of leaving the European Union. Since then, negotiations have been ongoing between the two parties to agree on the conditions for this to become a reality.

Although the date of Brexit has been set for 29 March, even today it is not clear what the future holds. What is certain is that .EU domains with a registered country GB will be affected. So EURid, the registry of .EU domains, has issued two sets of guidelines. One set deals with the no deal exit scenario and the other set deals with the deal exit scenario. Essentially the same actions are foreseen. What changes are the dates, which in the case of an agreement become more flexible.

Scenario No1 - Brexit without a deal

In the event that there is no agreement between the two parties by the deadline set, EURid will take the following measures:

New .eu domains

As of 30 March 2019, at 00:00:00 (CET), it will not be possible to register a new .eu domain with country code GB.

Existing .eu domains with country code GB

For existing .eu domains with a GB country code, the following is foreseen:

  • Updates from EURid
    The owners of these domains will receive a first update from EURid on 23 March 2019. This will indicate that their domain will soon not be aligned with the .EU regulatory framework. This will be followed by a more detailed update, via email, on 30 March 2019.
  • Two-month period to change data to avoid withdrawal
    From 30 March 2019 to 30 May 2019, .eu domain holders with a GB country code will have to update their details to correspond to a natural person or legal entity based in a country of the European Union or the European Economic Area.Please note that if your domain expires within this two-month period, it will not be automatically renewed. It will be placed in a withdrawal status on the day it expires. Also, if your domain is or has been quarantined during this time, it will not be able to be removed from this status and will be placed in withdrawal status.
  • On 30 May .EU domains with GB code will be put into the withdrawal regime
    From this date they will not operate or support active services such as website or e-mail.
  • Withdrawal and re-release to the public
    When twelve months after Brexit, i.e. in this scenario on 30 March 2020, all .eu domains with a GB country code will be revoked and will become available for registration again.

Scenario No2 - Brexit with an agreement

As mentioned above, in the case of an agreement, the same actions are foreseen, just with different dates. Essentially, time is given for adjustment!

In particular, the date on which new registrations of .eu domains with a GB country code will cease to be accepted will be 1 January 2021.

Owners of .EU domains that will have a GB country code on Brexit day will be sent updates by EURid on 23 December 2020 and 1 January 2021.

From 1 January to 2 March 2021, owners will have the opportunity to change their details to avoid withdrawal. .EU domains that will have a GB country code on 2 March 2021 will be placed in a revocation status and will be able to be revoked following the changes no later than 1 January 2020. From then onwards, .EU domains with a GB country code will be revoked and made available for registration again.

We hope we have helped you with the above information. Of course, we will keep you informed about anything new!

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