What you need to know 

Registration of domain names under .中国 (which corresponds to "Zhong Guo" meaning "'Middle Kingdom/China" in local simplified characters), is being introduced. The .中国 domain names will be registered in ASCII Latin characters, for example: company .中国. Registration will be introduced in three periods and is anticipated to eventually possess the same low threshold criteria to register as existing Chinese domain names. China was also allocated another extension also meaning Zhong Guo and Middle Kingdom/China but in traditional Chinese characters: .中国. It is expected that successful applicants for a .中国 domain may also be awarded the corresponding .中国 domain  

Sunrise One for the owners of registered trade marks closing 14 October 2012

Sunrise One will close on 14 October 2012. Registration in this period is available to the owners of registered word trade marks in:

  1. the local Trademark Office of the State Administration for Industry and Commerce (with an expiration date later that 29 April 2012),
  2. any other jurisdiction in the world.    

The text of the domain name applied for must correspond to the trade mark. However if the trade mark contains Chinese characters (Pinyin) together with ASCII characters including numbers then it is possible to apply for variations of the corresponding term: first in the order corresponding to the mark, so the owners of the mark 花朵123 may apply for the registration of huaduo123.中国 and also the reverse order of the mark: 123huaduo.中国.

  • It is not possible to apply on the basis of marks containing images.
  • The domain name will be allocated on a 'first come first served basis' if multiple applications are received for the same domain.
  • It may be necessary to provide a scanned copy of the trade mark in JPEG format when applying on the basis of a non-Chinese trade mark, while locally registered marks are likely to be verified with the Trademark Office of the State Administration for Industry and Commerce.
  • Our deadline to receive completed applications for this period, including any supporting documentation necessary, is close of business on 9 October 2012.

Sunrise Two for owners of existing Chinese domain names 15 - 23 October 2012

Sunrise Two will operate from 15-23 October 2012. In this period applications may be made by the owners of existing Chinese domain names in ASCII characters registered directly at the second level under .cn or at the third level under the extensions .com.cn, .org.cn, .net.cn or any of the extensions for the provinces for China such as .sh.cn.

  • The proposed .中国 domain name must correspond to the existing Chinese domain name.
  • The proposed owner of the .中国 domain name must be the same as the owner of the existing Chinese domain name.
  • We can only accept orders for this period on the basis of existing Chinese domain names that we manage, as applications in this period must be submitted via the same registrar as the existing domain name.
  • It is expected that, again, if multiple applications are submitted for the same domain name in this period the domain name will be allocated to the first application received.
  • Our deadline to receive completed applications for this period, including any supporting documentation necessary, is close of business on 12 October 2012.

General Availability

It is expected that from 29 October 2012 it will then be possible to apply for the registration of .中国 domain names without further disruption. It is expected that registration of .中国 domain names will possess the same eligibility criteria as the registration of .cn .com.cn .org.cn and .net.cn domain names for China, with registration available to both individuals and businesses located in 66 countries including China and the United Kingdom. The domain names will not need to correspond to or be derived from the name of the proposed owner. There is no restriction on the number of domains that can be registered to a single entity. Our deadline to receive completed applications for this period including any supporting documentation necessary is close of business on 26 October 2012.

Action to consider

Brand owners should consider reviewing their portfolios to identify if any registrations are appropriate. For further information or to arrange a registration, please contact us. It is expected that the results of applications for both of the Sunrise periods will be released between 25 and 28 October.