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The Enhanced Partnership and Cooperation Agreement (EPCA) governs trade and economic relations between the EU and Kazakhstan. The agreement was signed in 2015 and entered into provisional application on 1 May 2016. After ratification by all Member States, the agreement entered into force on 1st of March 2020.

The EPCA replaces the Partnership and Cooperation Agreement, signed in 1995 and which entered into force in 1999.

The EU Strategy for Central Asia is also an important framework for relations between the EU and Kazakhstan. A revision of the EU Strategy for Central Asia is planned to be completed in 2019.

Trade picture

  • The EU is Kazakhstan's biggest trade partner, with almost 40% share in its total external trade.
  • Kazakhstan's exports to the EU are heavily dominated by oil and gas which account for more than 80% of the country's total exports.
  • Exports from the EU are dominated by machinery and transport equipment, as well as products within the manufacturing and chemicals sectors.
  • Imports from Kazakhstan greatly exceed EU exports to Kazakhstan.
  • Kazakhstan has a growing importance as an oil and gas supplier to the EU. Kazakhstan has benefited from strong foreign direct investment in recent years, largely to its oil and gas sector. Almost half of the foreign direct investment inflow comes from the EU.

EU-Kazakhstan: Trade in goods

Trade in goods 2017-2019, € billions
Year EU imports EU exports Balance
2017 16.9 4.8 -12.1
2018 20.2 5.5 -14.7
2019 18.4 5.9 -12.5

EU-Kazakhstan: Trade in services

Trade in services 2016-2018, € billions
Year EU imports EU exports Balance
2016 0.6 1.3 0.7
2017 0.9 1.3 0.4
2018 1.0 1.2 0.2

EU-Kazakhstan: Foreign direct investment

Foreign direct investment 2018, € billions
Year Inward stocks Outward stocks Balance
2018 7.7 63.5 55.8

Unless otherwise mentioned “EU” concerns for all indicated years the current European Union of 27 Member States.

Date of retrieval: 22/04/2020

More statistics on Kazakhstan

EU and Kazakhstan

Kazakhstan is the first Central Asian partner to have concluded an EPCA with the EU. The agreement creates a better regulatory environment for businesses in areas such as:

  • trade in services
  • establishment and operation of companies
  • capital movements
  • raw materials and energy
  • government procurement
  • intellectual property rights

Since the expiry of the EC-Kazakhstan steel agreement at the end of 2006, the bilateral trade in steel has been based on ‘autonomous measures.’ These measures allow free entry of products into the EU without customs duties or quantitative restrictions, with some exceptions. A new agreement will replace these measures once signed.

Committees and Dialogues

The EU and Kazakhstan meet regularly to discuss issues and best practices when applying the EPCA Agreement.

Cooperation Committee on Trade Configuration

Trading with Kazakhstan