Relations between Burundi and the European Union (EU) are based on three complementary principles: the political dimension, economic and trade cooperation and development cooperation.
Relations between the EU and Burundi are currently governed by the Cotonou Agreement, the aim of which is to build a global partnership. Article 8 of this agreement requires regular political dialogue.
The EU delegation, along with the EU countries, therefore maintains a political dialogue with the Burundian authorities on issues of mutual interest.
These discussions focus mainly on supporting the crisis recovery process, consolidating peace, strengthening democracy and combating poverty.
Since the end of 2014, the dialogue between the EU and Burundi has intensified in accordance with the provisions of the Cotonou Agreement.
However, in 2016 the EU decided that the government of Burundi was no longer adhering to the basic principles of the partnership as defined in the agreement, and a Council Decision of 14 March 2016, under Article 96 of the Cotonou Agreement, suspended direct financial support to the Burundian administration (including budget support), although support for the public, regional aid and humanitarian aid were maintained.
In both 2010 and 2015, the EU deployed an election observation mission (the 2015 mission was withdrawn partway through the process).