The EU Strategy on Central Asia: To the successful implementation of the new Strategy

Representative office of the Friedrich Ebert Foundation in the Kyrgyz Republic together with Bishkek Policy Group released a new publication " The EU Strategy on Central Asia". 


More than 12 years have passed since the creation of the first EU Strategy for Central Asia in 2007. Since then new dynamics in the region, as well as new players from outside the region, are reshaping the political landscape of Central Asia. In June 2019 the EU Council approved the new strategy for Central Asia in order to adapt its approach to new circumstances and overcome shortcomings of the former strategy.

This paper capitalizes on the two features of the new Strategy: the greater attention that is paid to, and recognition of a) the Internal Dimension -  the varied and dynamic developments among the five Central Asian countries; and, b) the External Dimension -  the presence and relevance of other external partners and projects present in the region.

Five post-Soviet countries, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan, are at the receiving end of the new EU Strategy. A more active participation of the Central Asian partners in the development and implementation of the EU Strategy is required, preventing its transformation into a predominantly one-sided initiative.

Among the third relevant stakeholders, the most important ones are China, Russia, and, in terms of congruence with EU priorities, the United States of America.  The Strategy emphasizes the EU’s willingness to join forces with both Central Asian countries and external players to achieve common goals without compromising existing relations with regional partners.

The analysis formulates a number of recommendations both for the EU and for stakeholders outside the EU who will be involved in its implementation.  

The Publication can be found: here

We would like to thank the regional authors for their expertise on the subject: Emilbek Dzhuraliev, Nargiza Muratalieva, as well as Bishkek Policy Group for their contribution.