On Friday 25 October, in Nukus, the International High-Level Conference under the auspices of the United Nations was held, entitled "Aral Sea Region - zone of ecological innovation and technology". Also presiding over the event were Peter Burian's Special Representative of the European Union for Central Asia, and the Ambassador of the European Union Delegation to Uzbekistan, Eduards Stiprais. Peter Burian gave a keynote speech highlighting the role of the European Union in engaging in environmental issues with these words: "The EU is committed to continuing regional cooperation, including through the EU-Central Asia Cooperation Platform on the Environment, Climate. This platform can be used to build confidence, including the joint management of water in the region, an issue that remains sensitive. In line with our Strategy on Central Asia the EU wants to work with everybody who wants to support the sustainable development in Central Asia to increase synergy and complementarity of actions of individual partners for achieving maximum efficiency."
Ambassador Stiprais also intervened during the first session of the conference, concerning the promotion of a favorable environment for attracting foreign investment to develop and implement environmentally friendly technologies, exemplifying the challenges and opportunities of international cooperation in these donor assistance activities in the Aral Sea region.
As evidence of this, at the end of September the European Investment Bank (EIB) and the Ministry of Investment and Foreign Trade of Uzbekistan signed a memorandum of understanding, paving the way for an investment program worth 100 million euros, designed to combine international efforts to restore the Aral Sea.