EU CENTRAL ASIA STRATEGY

Southern Corridor, White Stream: The Strategic Rationale

By Vladimir Socor

White Stream, the proposed gas pipeline from Georgia to Romania on the seabed of the Black Sea, is intended to maximize European gas imports from Central Asia through the E.U.-initiated Southern Corridor. The Corridor grand design spans Azerbaijan, Georgia, Turkey, and –with White Stream– also a maritime route to European Union territory via the Black Sea. At its other end, the Southern Corridor is premised on a trans-Caspian link to Turkmenistan for massive European imports of Central Asian gas.

Kyrgyzstan's Role In Regional Security

With the war in Afghanistan drawing international attention, the Kyrgyz Republic and other Central Asian countries seem to have fallen off of the American agenda. During his diplomatic visit to the United States, Kyrgyz Foreign Minister Kadyrbek Sarbaev spoke at the Carnegie Endowment about the need to revamp Kyrgyz-US relations. In particular, he stressed that many of the problems plaguing Afghanistan and Kyrgyzstan are in fact regional problems, and that multilateral negotiations and mutual concessions can help find solutions to these problems.

Uzbekistan Challenges Regional Electricity Supplies Network

By Erica Marat

Kyrgyzstan’s growing list of troubles has recently been further complicated by yet another predicament. Tashkent has announced that Uzbekistan is likely to leave the Central Asian power supply cascade in the coming months. According to Tashkent’s official interpretation, Uzbekistan can now provide its population with enough locally generated electricity and does not need to be part of the network created during the Soviet period. This means that Kyrgyzstan’s south and parts of Tajikistan will experience severe electricity shortages due to the break in regional cycles.

Turkmenistan: Ashgabat Energy-Reserve Controversy Continues To Flare

By Regis Gente

Are Turkmenistan’s energy reserve figures fudged or not? Just over a week after allegations first surfaced that the Turkmen government’s claims are grossly hyped, the controversy over Ashgabat’s export capacity is still flaring. Representatives of the firm that conducted the original audit are vigorously defending their reputation for thoroughness. Meanwhile, a whistleblower says he remains confident in the accuracy of his sources’ information.