First, it is important to note that the IANA functions contract was not part of the JPA mid-term review and the Department views these as two distinct instruments. As the community is aware, the IANA functions contract covers the performance of a series of currently interdependent technical functions that enable the continued efficient operation of the Internet, including processing requests to change the authoritative root zone file. Implementations of changes to the authoritative root zone file are performed by VeriSign under the terms of a separate agreement with the Department.
The Department believes that it is important to clarify that we are not in discussions with either party to change the respective roles of the Department, ICANN or VeriSign regarding the management of the authoritative root zone file, nor do we have any plans to undertake such discussions. Consistent with public statements made by the United States governement starting in 2000 and reinforced by the 2005 U.S. Principles on the Internet's Domain Name and Addressing System, the Department, while open to operational efficiency measures that address governments' legitimate public policy and sovereignty concerns with respect to the management of their ccTLD, has no plans to transition management of the authoritative root zone file to ICANN as suggested in the PSC documents.
In an article about the All important IANA the author wrote:
An ICANN that is completely privatised and does not behave well afterward also might easily be stripped from the IANA contract and therefore its grip on the root zone.