Central Asia is a region strategically located on the crossroads of the two continents. The region is represented by five states (Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan) with different level of economic development and with the population amounting to over 60 million people. The region is rich in energy resources, represented by oil, gas, coal and hydropower resources.
The thesis analyses, assesses and scrutinises one of the topical issues of the contemporary international relations - cooperation between the European Union and Central Asian states before and after adoption in June 2007 of the ‘European Union and Central Asia: Strategy for a New Partnership’, an important political document in the history of relations between the two parties.
The new stage of cooperation is analysed more comprehensively accentuating priorities set in the Strategy. Analysis of the current state of affairs is conducted concerning some important issues of the Strategy related to regional cooperation between Central Asian states, such as integrated water management and development of hydro-energy system, issues of diversification of hydrocarbons supply routes from the region to Europe and provision of energy security, etc.
Issues of cooperation between the European Union and Tajikistan are analysed as a case study. State of affairs between some of the European Union member-states and Central Asian countries is characterised.
The thesis also scrutinises other regional/international actors engaged in cooperation with Central Asia (such as China, Russia, the US, Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, etc.) and their potential for interaction with the European Union for more effective joint solution of the problems existing in the region is assessed.
In the conclusion, development of cooperation between the European Union and Central Asian states is scrutinised, the problems and their possible solutions in this regard are analysed, and the recommendations for increasing effectiveness of cooperation between the two parties are presented.
The European Union’s foreign policy in Central Asia is interpreted from perspective of the theories of international relations namely neorealism, neoliberalism and constructivism in the end of every chapter.