Kazakhstan, EU to Sign Enhanced Cooperation Agreement
Wednesday 11 November 2015
ASTANA (Interfax-Kazakhstan) — A new enhanced partnership agreement between Kazakhstan and the EU will be signed in December this year, Kazakhstan’s Prime Minister Karim Massimov has said.
“We want to continue the relationships, to deepen them with the European Union. In fact, all the formalities are completed, and in December we plan to sign [the agreement] on enhanced partnership with the European Union”, Massimov said at the first meeting of the Astana club on Wednesday.
Earlier Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev said that President of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker could arrive in Astana to sign the enhanced partnership and cooperation agreement. This will open a new page in the relations between Kazakhstan and the EU, according to him.
Bilateral relations between Kazakhstan and the EU are governed by:
- a Partnership and Cooperation Agreement (since 1999)
- a Memorandum of Understanding on cooperation in the field of energy (2006)
- a Memorandum of Understanding on cooperation in the field of transport (2009).
Funding is provided by the EU’s Development Cooperation Instrument (DCI).
EU assistance to the country focuses on:
- strengthening the capacity of regional and local government
- supporting reform of the justice sector
- improving the capacity of the public sector to introduce social and economic reforms.
The EU and Kazakhstan also cooperate in the framework of a regional approach, which includes all 5 Central Asian republics: the EU and Central Asia strategy for a new partnership (2007).
As a middle-income country, Kazakhstan has graduated from bilateral grants provided under the Development Cooperation Instrument. However, the country will still participate in regional and thematic programmes of the EU.