Management and operation of Laos’ internet top-level domain (.la) was officially launched by the Lao National Internet Center (LANIC) yesterday.
The top-level domain for Laos, dot.la is based on the Laos country code, and was established in 1995. It was recently returned to the Lao government, after being leased to a foreign company.
During the time the dot.la domain was leased out, the Ministry of Post and Telecommunications has been training its staff, drafting regulations, and preparing to take over full management and operations of the domain.
The ministry has authorized local internet providers to provide services for the .la domain, and has allowed a foreign company to provide services abroad.
The National Information Center now manages the top-level domain dot.la, and also supplies cloud computing systems, services for co-location, and web hosting. It will become an important infrastructure system for future electronic government systems.
There are around 70,000 users of the .la domain name around the world, with only a few hundred users in Laos itself, according to officials at the Lao National Internet Center.
Until now the .la suffix has been notably popular in the United States, and has often been reserved by websites based in Los Angeles (LA).
Now, the Lao government hopes to promote its use domestically.