In December 2015, the European Union and Kazakhstan signed a new “enhanced partnership and cooperation agreement,” which, among other things, calls for greater collaboration on energy issues. Closer ties – whether in the form of natural gas supplies or green technologies – could benefit both sides. However, the success of the initiative depends on how they approach Russia’s interests in the region.
The EU and Kazakhstan have steadily stepped up their energy partnership since the EU adopted its Central Asia strategy in 2007. In July 2015, the European Council had adopted an Energy Diplomacy Action Plan to support diversification, with a “focus on the