EU-Tajikistan relations date back to 1991, when the European Commission launched the Technical Aid to the Commonwealth of Independent States (TACIS). Since 2007, the EU delivers development support to Tajikistan through the Development Cooperation Instrument (DCI). Under the DCI, the EU channels aid worth of €251 million to Tajikistan. This implies an increase of 80% compared to the period 2007-2014.
At bilateral level, for the period 2014-2020, EU's development support towards Tajikistan concentrates on the sectors of health (€62 million), education (€75 million) and rural development (€110 million).
In the area of education, the EU aims to assist the Tajik government in working towards a more integrated education system that is inclusive, competence-based and quality-oriented within the framework of the National Strategy of Education Development of the Republic of Tajikistan. The EU wishes to reach these objectives through improving the quality of secondary education, and vocational education training. This should help re-establishing the nexus education-labour market and contribute to better adapt the young Tajik population with the skills requirement of the labour market. Ultimately the programme will thus support better employment opportunities. A first programme of €15 million was adopted in 2015 which should pave the way for a wider intervention planned in 2018.
Mainly delivered through Budget Support, EU support to the health sector aims at improving the governance of the sector notably by supporting and strengthening the reforms of the health financing system. Another main objective is to improve the coverage and quality of services delivered to the Tajik population, notably by improving the performances of primary health care services.
The EU's projects in rural development are targeted at reducing poverty in rural and isolated communities, through inclusive on- and off-farm wealth creation and income employment generating opportunities. In parallel, the aim is to encourage a sustainable use and management of natural resources and ecosystems and improve resilience to extreme climatic conditions. A first programme of €35 million adopted in 2014 focusing on strengthening Tajik institutions in the sector and improving the management of natural resources in the Zarafshan valley is under implementation.
The country also benefits from EU Regional programmes in Central Asia and from the EU’s thematic programmes: the European Initiative for Democracy and Human Rights (EIDHR), the Non-State Actors / Local Authorities Thematic Programme, and the Thematic Programme for Global Public Goods and Challenges.
The EU Delegation to Tajikistan, in Dushanbe, manages the EU's bilateral development projects to the country. For more information, see the relevant section on the Delegation's website.