Nigeria Registers 30,000 .ng Domain Names

The total number of registered Nigeria's country code Top Level Domain Names, .ng, which is the nation's identifier on the World Wide Web has hit over 30, 000, even as the cost of purchasing a domain name has been crashed from N500, 000 to just N15, 000 to encourage proliferation of the .ng domain names.

This was disclosed by the Chief Operating Officer of the Nigerian Internet Registration Association, NiRA, Mr. Ope Odusan during the fifth Annual General Meeting of the association which held in Lagos this week. NiRA is the body saddled with the responsibility of the administration and promotion of the country's ccTLD .ng.

According to him, total registered .ng domain names which stood at around 9, 000 as at 2011 has since increased by additional 21, 000 to reach the current figures. He, however, explained that the figure should have increased beyond 30, 000 had Nigerian businesses and individuals taken the uptake of the country's domains names seriously.

According to him, "It's ironical that the foreigners who many often say are not always ready to do business with any business with .ng domain constitute the largest owners of the .ng domain names."

He said this is contrary to the perception of many Nigerians, who often give excuses that the image problem of Nigeria also affect the predispositions of foreign businesses in not wanting to do business with any Nigerian business with .ng. Recognising that the high cost of owning the domain names also contributed to its slow uptake locally, Odusan said as part of measures to increase the usage of .ng, NiRA has crashed the cost from about N500, 000 to a paltry N15,000.

He noted that within one week of reducing the cost, NiRA recorded additional 300 domain names but lamented that most of the companies that purchased the domain names were foreign businesses.

He therefore called on Nigerian businesses to take the huge economic advantage offered by .ng in terms of faster internet location, reduced cost, creation of more jobs and the security of their digital contents, by hosting their websites in-country instead of hosting them abroad, where their sensitive data could be compromised. He also explained that NiRA was already working with the Ministry of Communication Technology, the National Information Technology Development Agency, NITDA, and other necessary stakehoders to work on policy that can encourage the use of .ng domain names.