EU relations with Kazakhstan

Bilateral relations between Kazakhstan and the EU are governed by:

Bilateral funding was provided until 2013 by the EU's Development Cooperation Instrument (DCI), with the EU assistance to the country most recently focusing 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.

As a middle-income country, Kazakhstan has recently graduated from bilateral grants provided under the DCI. However, the country still benefits from the EU's  thematic programs. New types of cooperation have been launched, such as ‘twinning’ with EU member states’ institutions.

A new Enhanced Partnership and Cooperation Agreement, building on the potential for stronger EU-Kazakhstan relations, was signed on 21 December 2015, and its provisional application between the EU and Kazakhstan started on 1 May 2016. During the period of the provisional application, in so far as the provisions of the Partnership and Cooperation Agreement, which entered into force on 1 July 1999, are not covered by the provisional application of this new Agreement, they continue to apply.

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).

For more information, see also:

EU regional strategy paper for Central Asia 2007-13

Central Asia multi-annual indicative programme 2011-13 of the Development Cooperation Instrument (includes the National Indicative Programme for Kazakhstan).

Council conclusions on the EU Strategy for Central Asia (June 2015)