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EU Central Asia Envoy In Kyrgyzstan For Talks On Expanding Ties

Peter Burian, the EU's special representative for Central Asia
Peter Burian, the EU's special representative for Central Asia

BISHKEK -- The European Union's special representative for Central Asia, Peter Burian, has arrived in Bishkek to discuss with Kyrgyz officials ways to expand cooperation between the bloc and the Central Asian nation.

The EU office in Bishkek said on November 29 that Burian was due to discuss EU-Kyrgyz ties with the parliament speaker Dastanbek Jumabekov, Prime Minister Mukhammedkalyi Abylgaziev, and Foreign Minister Chyngyz Aidarbekov.

Burian was also scheduled to meet with representatives of Kyrgyzstan's civil society and foreign diplomats.

His last visit to Kyrgyzstan was in February, two months after the EU and Kyrgyzstan launched negotiations on a new bilateral agreement.

The EU announced in December 2017 that the accord would replace the 1999 Kyrgyz-EU Partnership and Cooperation Agreement and would focus on political and economic cooperation, as well as trade and investment relations.

After visiting Bishkek in November last year, EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini called the agreement under discussion "ambitious."

The EU and another Central Asian nation, Kazakhstan, concluded a new agreement on establishing closer ties in December 2015.

Both Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan have close ties to Moscow and are members of the Russia-led Eurasian Economic Union.

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