President of Nigeria Internet Registration Association (NIRA), Revd. Sunday Folayan, has said the market potential of Nigeria’s .Ng domain, the country code top level domain (ccTLD), was worth N37 billion. Speaking at the annual .NG media college workshop with the theme “A World of Opportunities: Tapping the Opportunities in the DNS Industry,” Folayan said the .NG was a gold mine that could contribute very significantly to the economic development of the Nigeria. With a population of over 190 million, internet penetration of over 98.3 million users and business population of over 37 million, the potential for the .NG domain is indeed great.
He said despite .NG having only a paltry 106,000 domain names sold with 65 domain registrars, “with a business population of over 37 million, the .NG has a market potential of over N37 billion annually (assuming an annual renewal price of N1,000 per .ng domain). These are besides the potential businesses from additional registrars and subsequent jobs that will be created.”
NIRA recently auctioned some of its premium domain names and some of them were sold for as high as N7 million. The NIRA president also pointed out that in the last four years, NIRA has witnessed a 50 per cent year on year growth in the number of domain names registered and was poised to maintain the momentum.
He compared the economic potentials to the .tk domain name which belong to Tokelau, a country of 1.6 million population but with over 21 million of its .tk country code top-level domain (ccTLD) name sold and one-sixth of its economy coming from the sale of .tk domains, while Germany with a population of about 83 million people has over 20 million of its .de domain name sold already.
Folayan recalled that some of the challenges militating the growth of the .ng domain name include low awareness among Nigerians, poor infrastructure, preference by many for foreign domain names, poor and inadequate policies to drive the .ng domain name and insufficient manpower in the sector.
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