Publications of Jasina, Alina

EU-Kazakhstani Relations: Pragmatism After All?

This policy brief examines the dynamics of the bilateral relationship between the European Union and Kazakhstan. In recent years, the EU strategy on Central Asia has become more concentrated with Kazakhstan gaining a wider prominence in the EU foreign policy agenda. Yet the partnership between the two actors is still marked by numerous hurdles. Through the assessment of EU policy towards the region, focusing specifically on the dominant fields of cooperation, that is energy and trade, security and defence, this paper, on the one had, stresses the beneficial nature of the relationship between the two actors. On the other hand, it points to certain shortcomings of existing practices that still undermine an enhanced partnership. Both the Kazakhstani leadership and the EU seem to be guided predominantly by the pragmatic interests towards each other, preventing a successful cooperation especially in the field of democracy and human rights. Furthermore, the EU seems to have so far failed to consider the geopolitical realities of the region which in a long run might thwart EU's attempts to increase engagement with Kazakhstan. In light of this, this policy brief provides recommendation to the EU for the improvement and deepening of the existing ties.