BRUSSELS: High Representative/Vice-President Josep Borrell will travel to Central Asia, starting his visit in Astana, Kazakhstan, on 16 to 17 November, and continuing to Samarkand, Uzbekistan, on 17 to 19 November. His mission aims to further strengthen and build on the positive dynamics in EU’s bilateral and regional relations, in particular through chairing the EU-Central Asia Ministerial and co-hosting the EU-Central Asia Connectivity Conference: Global Gateway.
In Kazakhstan, the High Representative will meet President Tokayev and Foreign Minister Tileuberdi, following which a joint press conference is planned at 11:40 local time (06:40 CET) on 17 November.
HR/VP Borrell will then travel to Samarkand, Uzbekistan, where he will chair the 18th EU-Central Asia Ministerial meeting, which is hosted by the Uzbek Foreign Minister Norov. The meeting will provide an opportunity to step up cooperation with the countries of the region in areas such as security, trade and investment, transport, green energy and sustainable growth, improved connectivity as well as closer cooperation in education, science and innovation. Ministers will also exchange on regional challenges, including the situation in Afghanistan and the negative consequences caused by Russia’s illegal military aggression against Ukraine. Following the meeting, a joint press point with Foreign Minister Norov is planned around 19:00 local time (15:00 CET) on 17 November.
On 18 November, HR/VP Borrell, will co-host the EU-Central Asia Connectivity Conference: Global Gateway. The conference will explore three themes: digital connectivity, transport connectivity, and energy connectivity between Central Asia and the European Union. In this context, the EU, together with International Financial Institutions, will aim to stimulate investment in the region. HRVP will deliver the opening statement at 10:00 local time (06:00 CET).
In the margins of the Conference, HR/VP Borrell will meet with the President of Uzbekistan and Foreign Ministers of Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan and Turkmenistan to discuss bilateral relations and regional cooperation.