The Eurasian Council on Foreign Affairs (ECFA) will publish a report on the EU’s new strategy for Central Asia at a press conference at Cliveden House, Berkshire, at 10.30 am on Wednesday 5th December, on occasion of the Fifth Annual Meeting of its influential Advisory Council. The event will be chaired by Dr. Benita Ferrero-Waldner, former Foreign Minister of Austria and former EU Commissioner for External Relations, and the report will be presented by The Hon. Franco Frattini, former Foreign Minister of Italy and Chamber President of the Council of State of Italy. Ms. Natasha Khanjenkova, Managing Director for Russia and Central Asia at the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), will provide the summing up.
The report, which is the synthesis of expert contributions from fifteen international institutions including the United Nations, the EBRD and several universities, contains a chapter of conclusions and recommendations aimed at informing the European External Action Service (EEAS) as it considers its new Strategy for Central Asia covering the period 2020 – 2027. The EU will be announcing its new approach to this important and growing region in the first half of 2019 and the ECFA hopes to play an increasingly influential role in helping to deepen economic and institutional ties between European countries and the states of Central Asia
This year the ECFA Advisory Council’s guests at Cliveden House will include, among others, H.E. Ambassador Peter Burian, EU Special Representative for Central Asia, and the former US Deputy Energy Secretary, Dan Poneman, as well as senior political and business leaders from the countries that straddle the modern “Silk Route” including, it is anticipated, a high level “Belt and Road” delegation from China. The annual meeting will culminate in a formal dinner in the French Dining Room on 4th December in the presence of H.E. Kairat Abdrakhmanov, Foreign Minister of the Republic of Kazakhstan, attended by statesmen, diplomats, business leaders and representatives of the armed forces.
Copies of the ECFA’s report will be available on the organisation’s homepage from 12pm on 4th December. Members of the media who wish to attend the press conference the following morning are cordially invited to inform the organisers at firstname.lastname@example.org.