ICANN has announced plans to set up an office in Asia as part of its global expansion strategy.
According to ICANN CEO and chair Fadi Chehadé ICANN might choose Singapore as its Asian base, with an official announcement due in April following ICANN’s meeting in Beijing, where it is thought the decision will be made.
The move to establish a new Asian office may be considered a response to allegations that ICANN exercises a US-centric bias, which it has often received criticism for from Brazil, Russia and China. ICANN’s headquarters are located in Los Angeles, from where it currently regulates global Internet domain names. As well as setting up an office in Asia, ICANN is believed likely to set up an office in Istanbul, Turkey for its EMEA operations. Los Angeles could remain responsible for operations in North and South America. ICANN axed its Australian office under Chehadé in the lead up to Christmas.
Chehadé told ZDNet ahead of his visit to Asia, a visit aimed at highlighting how ICANN plans to increase its Asian presence: “Asia has not been well-embraced by ICANN in the past. We owe Asia a big apology.”
Smaller offices could be established by ICANN in other Asian cities, such as Tokyo and Beijing, to support an office in Singapore.