.ZA domain prices must increase – ZACR

The ZA Central Registry (ZACR) has outlined why it believes an increase in the wholesale fee for .ZA domains from R45 to R55 per domain is justified.

This follows the ZA Domain Name Authority (ZADNA) launching public consultations over a possible review of pricing for .ZA domains.

“While there are firm moves afoot overseas to increase the price of .COM domains by 7% per year for four years, in South Africa the ZACR is motivating for a simple inflation-related increase in the wholesale registration and renewal fee for .co.za, .web.za, .org.za and .net.za domains,” ZACR said.

ZACR highlighted that the Consumer Price Inflation has increased by about 21% since 2015 while there was no increase in the wholesale fee for .ZA domains during this time.

“The lack of inflation-related annual increases over the past six years has been unfortunate considering South Africa slipped above the Reserve Bank’s targeted 3% – 6% consumer inflation band on several occasions since 2014,” said the ZACR.

It said that moving forward, it needs fair annual inflation-related adjustments in the price it charges its partners to provision domains like .co.za.

“A fair upwards fee adjustment will prevent this crucial national ICT asset falling into disrepair,” it said.

“The Internet is a basic utility and utilities must increase in cost every year if they are to continue to effectively serve growing populations, and especially growing stay-at-home populations,” said  ZACR.

ZADNA proposal

While ZACR is proposing an increase to R55 per domain, ZADNA has highlighted three possible options:

  1. Increase the EPP wholesale fee for .ZA domains to R50 per year
  2. Keep the existing EPP wholesale fee for .ZA domains of R45 per year
  3. Decrease the EPP wholesale fee for .ZA domains

“It must be noted upfront that this review of the wholesale fee must not be construed to be an indication or commitment by ZADNA to change the fee upwards or downwards,” said ZADNA.

“Instead, the fee review is intended to better inform ZADNA if there should be any changes to the current EPP and co.za legacy wholesale fees and if so, what those changes should be.”

ZADNA has requested that public and industry comments regarding this proposed pricing change be submitted by 30 June 2020.

Now read: Price hike for .ZA domain on the cards

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.ZA domain prices must increase – ZACR