The EU, Central Asia, and the Development of Continental Transport and Trade
Since the collapse of the USSR, a number of initiatives have embarked, separately or together, on the momentous task of rebuilding trade and transportation arteries across Central Asia and the Caucasus. The underlying logic has been two-fold: by reconnecting the landlocked new states of the region to their neighbors and historic trading partners, the heart of Asia can become a land corridor connecting Europe to Asia. This paper plots out the main lines of transport and trade development in Central Asia and their potential for both regional states and the European Union. To this end, the paper presents an overview of existing arrangements and plans, ranging from the EU’s TRACECA project to China’s Silk Road Economic Belt. Following this, it seeks to look two decades into the future of Eurasia-wide transport and trade. On that basis, it identifies four major emerging issues, including the geopolitics of transport and trade as well as the necessity of developing soft infrastructure, which are bound to become important both to Central Asia and Europe but which, to date, have been relatively overlooked.
The Long Game on the Silk Road: U.S. and EU Strategy for Central Asia and the Caucasus
This book argues that American and European policies toward Central Asia and the Caucasus suffer from both conceptual and structural impediments. It traces the framework of Western policies to the […]
The European Union’s Political and Security Engagement with Central Asia: How to Move Forward
Despite an ambitious set of policy initiatives for Central Asia, the EU is punching below its weight in a region where Russia and China are far more influential. Ten years after the EU launched a strategy for Central Asia, the EU is still facing substantial challenges in implementing its strategy successfully.
The EU and Central Asia: Expanding Economic Cooperation, Trade, and Investment
Since the independence of the Central Asian states, this landlocked region has taken time to reconnect with the world, including Europe. Twenty-five years ago, many underestimated the diverse challenges – infrastructural, economic, political – that impeded the region’s trade and connectivity with the rest of the world. Yet as trade statistics show, much has been accomplished in a quarter century.
How the U.S. Promotes Extremism in the Name of Religious Freedom
On July 26, U.S. President Donald Trump announced his nomination of Kansas Governor Sam Brownback as U.S. ambassador at large for international religious freedom. The position was created by the International Religious […]
Central Asia: All Together Now
After a quarter century of independence, the fragmentation of Central Asia is evident to all. A senior official there might justifiably complain about how each country “[is] pursuing its own […]
Terror in Stockholm
Last week’s terror attack in Sweden should raise important questions about how the West defines its enemies. Last Friday, an ISIS supporter rammed a truck into a department store in […]