On 14 March 2014, the U.S. National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) announced its intent to transition its stewardship of the IANA functions to the global multistakeholder community. Moroccan Minister of Industry, Trade, Investment and the Digital Economy, Moulay Hafid Elalamy, has expressed Morocco’s support of the IANA Stewardship Transition, during the Opening Ceremony of ICANN’s 55th Public Meeting, taking place in Marrakech, Morocco from 5-10 March. The meeting is being held under the high patronage of His Majesty King Mohammed VI.
“This great meeting in Marrakech coincides with the last leg, the final leg, of the process in order to get to a transition plan of the governance model of the world system of Internet resources, in order to increase transparency as well as accountability,” said Elalamy. “This initiative is, without any doubt, the illustration of opening up the Internet.”
ICANN55 is taking place during a critical moment in the history of the Internet governance, as members of the global Internet community have come together in Marrakech to finalize a set of proposals which will transfer stewardship of key elements of the Internet’s system of unique identifiers – the IANA functions – from the United States Government over to the multistakeholder community.
Director General of Morocco’s National Telecommunications Regulatory Agency, Azdine El Mountassir Billah, spoke to the importance of the multistakeholder model of Internet governance, stating, “The great challenge - we know it all and we are working on it - consists of inventing a governance model for the Internet: a multistakeholder, inclusive, fair and balanced one, involving all stakeholders: governments, civil society, and businesses, in order to increase the exchange of opportunities, to reconcile points of view and to create the necessary synergies."
ICANN Board Chair Dr. Stephen Crocker remarked on the historic nature of ICANN55, but also to the work that still lies ahead, stating, “These proposals will usher in a new era of independence and global accountability of ICANN. Let me emphasize that we're not done yet. This will be an extremely important juncture at this meeting, and then we still have quite a lot of time and work that will go on in multiple quarters, including, of course, within the U.S. Government.”