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Pacific Governments to Enhance Better Participation in Internet Governance Discussions

Nadi, Fiji… Government delegates from sixteen Pacific countries recently attended a workshop aimed at overcoming barriers to participating in global Internet governance discussions, such as those taking place within the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) community.

The two-day capacity development workshop, themed "Harnessing the Potential of the Pacific GAC Representatives for Better Participation in ICANN," took place on 28-29 April 2017 in Nadi, Fiji. Organized by ICANN, in cooperation with the Governmental Advisory Committee (GAC) Under-served Regions Working Group, it was supported by the Fiji Government's Department of Communications.

The 20 government delegates in attendance were ICANN GAC members and represented these Pacific nations: Australia, Cook Islands, Federated State of Mircronesia, Fiji, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Nauru, Niue, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tokelau, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu.

"ICANN welcomes the participation of all stakeholders, including governments," said  Savé Vocea, ICANN's Vice President of Stakeholder Engagement for Australia and the Pacific Islands. "ICANN is dedicated to demand-driven engagement, and we are happy to see that all the Pacific GAC members were present at this workshop, which demonstrates their willingness to be part of the process."

Pacific nations face many challenges that inhibit their full ability to participate in global platforms such as ICANN. These include inadequate Internet access and a lack of human resources.

During the two-day workshop, the GAC representatives were introduced to ICANN and its policy development process, as well as high interest topics such as Domain Name System abuse. The delegates also learned about issues and working groups that required their immediate attention.

Shivnesh Prasad, Director of the Department of Communications, Government of Fiji, said during his opening remarks, "We are really happy to host this workshop. We often feel forgotten as a region in Internet governance discussions. It is challenging for us to participate in ICANN, as we do not have full understanding of the issues being discussed within the GAC."

The workshop also included the participation of ICANN ecosystem partners, including the Asia Pacific Network Information Centre (APNIC), which discussed issues relating to Internet Protocol (IP) addresses and the Address Supporting Organization (ASO).


For photos on the capacity development workshop, please visit here.

For more information about the capacity development workshop for Pacific GAC representatives, please visit here [PDF, 247 KB].

For more information about the ICANN's Governmental Advisory Committee, please visit here.

Media Contacts


Liana Teo
Head of Communications, APAC
Tel: +65 9765 5500

Fiona Aw
Global Communications Coordinator
Tel: +65 9113 6621


ICANN's mission is to help ensure a stable, secure and unified global Internet. To reach another person on the Internet, you need to type an address into your computer or other device – a name or a number. That address must be unique so computers know where to find each other. ICANN helps coordinate and support these unique identifiers across the world. ICANN was formed in 1998 as a not-for-profit public-benefit corporation and a community with participants from all over the world. For more information, please visit:

Domain Name System
Internationalized Domain Name ,IDN,"IDNs are domain names that include characters used in the local representation of languages that are not written with the twenty-six letters of the basic Latin alphabet ""a-z"". An IDN can contain Latin letters with diacritical marks, as required by many European languages, or may consist of characters from non-Latin scripts such as Arabic or Chinese. Many languages also use other types of digits than the European ""0-9"". The basic Latin alphabet together with the European-Arabic digits are, for the purpose of domain names, termed ""ASCII characters"" (ASCII = American Standard Code for Information Interchange). These are also included in the broader range of ""Unicode characters"" that provides the basis for IDNs. The ""hostname rule"" requires that all domain names of the type under consideration here are stored in the DNS using only the ASCII characters listed above, with the one further addition of the hyphen ""-"". The Unicode form of an IDN therefore requires special encoding before it is entered into the DNS. The following terminology is used when distinguishing between these forms: A domain name consists of a series of ""labels"" (separated by ""dots""). The ASCII form of an IDN label is termed an ""A-label"". All operations defined in the DNS protocol use A-labels exclusively. The Unicode form, which a user expects to be displayed, is termed a ""U-label"". The difference may be illustrated with the Hindi word for ""test"" — परीका — appearing here as a U-label would (in the Devanagari script). A special form of ""ASCII compatible encoding"" (abbreviated ACE) is applied to this to produce the corresponding A-label: xn--11b5bs1di. A domain name that only includes ASCII letters, digits, and hyphens is termed an ""LDH label"". Although the definitions of A-labels and LDH-labels overlap, a name consisting exclusively of LDH labels, such as"""" is not an IDN."