From 24 March 2022 companies, businesses, traders and organisations that have an "Australian Presence", will be able to register domain names directly in the .au namespace. Importantly, foreign companies that rely on Australian trade mark applications or registrations to satisfy the "Australian Presence" requirement, will only be able to register domain names that are an exact match to the marks the subject of such trade mark applications or registrations.
Priority to register names in the .au namespace will be given to registrants who hold domain names in other existing Australian second level domains, such as, .com.au or .net.au, immediately before launch of the .au direct namespace. The priority allocation system will be in place for six months. After this period domain names will become available to register under the .au direct namespace on a first come first serve basis.
Owners of Australian domain names who wish to register their names in the .au direct namespace should get ready to apply for registration in the priority period.
“I am delighted to announce .au direct will be available from March 2022, providing consumers the opportunity to licence shorter, eye-catching names and bringing Australia in line with most other country code Top Level Domains including the United Kingdom (.uk), Canada (.ca), the USA (.us) and New Zealand (.nz)"