The EU is promoting sustainable development, stability and security in all five countries in Central Asia. It is also encouraging closer regional cooperation between them and with the EU. The approach is in line with the strategy for a new partnership with Central Asia, launched in 2007.
The strategy took EU-Central Asia cooperation, which began in 1991, to the next level. It set up dialogue – at ministerial level – and cooperation in human rights, education, rule of law, energy, transport, environment and water, trade and economic relations and addressed shared threats and challenges. The strategy was reviewed by the Council of the European Union in June 2012 Council conclusions on Central Asia.
Funding priorities under the Development Cooperation Instrument (DCI) – at both regional and national levels – are set out in the Regional Strategy Paper for Assistance to Central Asia for the period 2007-13. They include: boosting sustainable development, promoting stability and security, and fostering closer regional cooperation both between countries of the region and with the EU.
The DCI has allocated €675 million to the region, 2007-13, under consecutive multi-annual indicative programmes (MIP). The first MIP (2007-10) earmarked €354 million over four years. The MIP, 2011-13, provides €321 million over three years of which €216 million is for bilateral cooperation and €105 million for regional cooperation.
The DCI replaces the former Technical Assistance to the Commonwealth of Independent States (TACIS) which supported the five newly independent states in their economic and social development during the transition period.