Germany continues to be the home of the most .eu registrations, accounting for more than one quarter (27.2%) of all .eu registrations with 978,566, but in the United Kingdom on the back of Brexit fears, registrations are plummeting and have almost halved in the 12 months to the end of June.
Registrations declined in the UK by 46.7% to 162,287 and 13.9% for the quarter as fears British registrants will be ineligible to hold their domains if Britain leaving the European Union comes to be. Assuming Brexit happens, British .eu registrants will lose their domain names unless the registrant has citizenship of a European Union country or for a business has an office in an EU country. Despite the collapse, the UK remains the sixth largest country of registrant origin.
But while .eu registrations are plummeting in the UK, they’re booming across the Irish Sea. In Ireland, also most likely due to Brexit fears, registrations jumped 18% in the quarter according to EURid’s Q2 2019 Progress Report. EURid, the .eu registry, suggests that UK .eu registrants are moving their contact to an Irish address. Other countries to show significant jumps in .eu registrations are Portugal (up 16.1%) and Norway (10.8%).
And while there are fluctuations, and Germany remains the number one country for .eu registrations, the Netherlands and France are also strong performers with 471,735 and 328,098 registrations respectively, followed by Poland (266,185) and Italy (263,199).
The second quarter is traditionally a strong quarter for renewals for .eu as the country code top-level domain was launched in April 2006 and is also the month when the most .eu domain names are registered. The renewal rate for Q2 shows, EURid notes, that the original registrants continue to rely on their .eu domain names.
The total number of .eu and .ею domain names registered at the end of Q2 2019 was 3,623,691, down from 3,790,450, a drop of 166,759. Of these there were 3.603 million .eu registrations while a year ago there were 3.790 million.
When taking into account over 35,000 abusive domain names suspended in the second half of 2018 and the drop in UK registrations, it could easily be argued .eu and .ею registrations have risen by 30,000 to 40,000.
The renewal rate in the second quarter of 2019 was 82.3% (82% in Q2 2018 and up 4% from the first quarter of 2019) while new registrations were down to 164,906 (171,843 in Q2 2018). Internationalised domain names under .eu were down to 35,836 (38,286).
There were a number of other initiatives that EURid highlighted in their quarterly report including the launch of the 2019 .eu Web Awards, the strengthening of efforts to fight online fraud in cooperation with EUIPO and the contribution to environmental initiatives.
The quarter also saw EURid and the European Commission Service Concession Contract extended until 12 October 2022, a contribution to the Monchique reforestation in Portugal and the Uganda Borehole projects to offset its CO2 emissions while ICANN announced the completion of the string evaluation for the IDN ccTLD “ευ” (xn--qxa6a) or .eu in Greek.