“Europe and Central Asia: Assessing the EU Strategy on Central Asia”

Date: Monday, March 2, 2015, 14:00-17:00
Venue: Europahuset, Regeringsgatan 65, 2nd floor, Stockholm,
Notification: comm-rep-sto-rsvp@ec.europa.eu

The seminar is jointly organised by the Embassy of Latvia in Sweden, the European Commission Representation in Sweden and the Institute for Security and Development Policy. Two panels will assess the complicated geopolitical environment in Central Asia, analyse challenges and developments which persist at the regional level, strengths and weaknesses of implementation of the EU Strategy, and will discuss future priority areas and cooperation frameworks.

13:30 – 14:00 Registration (coffee/tea and snacks will be served)
14:00 – 14:05 Welcome by Mr Johan Wullt, Acting Head of the European Commission Representation in Sweden
14:05 – 14:10 Introductory remarks by Mr Gints Jegermanis, Ambassador of Latvia to Sweden

14:10 – 15:20 Panel One: Regional Security and Political Development in Central Asia
Central Asia has a huge economic potential. Being rich of energy resources countries in the region are an important factor to the stability of Eurasia. At the same time, five Central Asian countries navigate in the midst of intertwining interests and the presence of various actors in the region. Should the EU and China investigate possibilities to coordinate and possibly even join efforts under the Silk Road Economic Belt initiative? How can the US engagement be sustained in the Central Asia region in the aftermath of the ISAF withdrawal?

Moderator: Dr. Svante E. Cornell
Mr. Eduards Stiprais, Under-Secretary of State – Political Director, MFA of Latvia
Dr. Nicklas Norling, Research Fellow on Central Asian issues, Institute for Security and Development Policy
Mr. Åke Peterson, Ambassador of Sweden to the Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan
Discussion, Q&A Session

15:20 – 15:50 Coffee break

15:50 – 16:50 Panel Two: Assessing the European Strategy on Central Asia
The EU and Central Asia reached a new quality of partnership with the 2007 EU-Central Asia Strategy for a New Partnership. It covers a broad spectrum of areas, but the partnership is still maturing and demands regular adjustment (the EU has assessed the advances made in its June 2012 Progress Report). How can the EU engagement be more efficient in Central Asia? What are the priority areas for cooperation that would trigger positive changes in a wider context and in a more comprehensive manner (security, economy, education)? Is the EU’s “offer” attractive enough and competitive? Does the EU possess the right toolbox?

Moderator: Dr Neil John Melvin
Mr Toivo Klaar, Head of the Central Asia Division, European External Action Service
Dr Dastan Yeleukenov, Ambassador of Kazakhstan to Sweden
Dr Svante E. Cornell, Director, Institute for Security and Development Policy
Discussion, Q&A Session

16:50 – 17:00 Concluding remarks by Mr Eduards Stiprais, Under-Secretary of State – Political Director, MFA of Latvia

 This event is by invitation only.