EU and China discuss cooperation with Central Asian countries

EU and China discuss cooperation with Central Asian countries


The EU Special Representative for Central Asia, Ambassador Terhi Hakala, met the Special Representative of the Chinese Government for Eurasian Affairs, Ambassador Li Hui, for consultations in Beijing today. The two sides discussed the EU’s and China’s respective engagement and cooperation with the countries in Central Asia and the situation in the region.

The EUSR informed on the EU policy with the region based on the 2019 EU Strategy for Central Asia, as well as on the priorities in the current, rapidly-changing circumstances. The EU has further strengthened the partnership with the region including through high-level dialogue, economic cooperation and cooperation with civil society. Ambassador Hakala referred to the EU’s role as a long-term partner to the region, as biggest donor and investor as well as second-biggest trading partner, and looked forward to widening the partnership with the countries, both bilaterally and regionally. Against the backdrop of the global challenges due to climate change and environmental degradation, the EUSR specifically pointed to the regional Team Europe Initiatives on Water, Energy and Climate change and on Digitalisation.

They furthermore exchanged views on the security situation in the wider region, including on Russia’s illegal war of aggression against Ukraine and on developments in Afghanistan and their effect on Central Asia. The EUSR voiced concern on the situation in Afghanistan, in particular regarding human rights, referring to shared interests and the dialogue with the Central Asian countries, including on border security, counter-terrorism and radicalisation. The EUSR reiterated the EU position on Russia’s illegal war of aggression against Ukraine and stressed that any meaningful way to end it must be consistent with the UN Charter in its entirety.

The two sides agreed to continue consultations in the future.

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