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Vol. 10 No. 1 | 2023 Edition

Violet Geinger

Is there Eurasian Connectivity
without Europe?


Niva Yau

Tucked between Russia, Iran, and China, Central Asia is now desperately looking for solutions to cushion the impacts of global tension on its fragile economies, which are deeply tied to sanctions against Russia and a local production slowdown as China recovers from its zero COVID policy. While European diplomacy has come at a crucial time, its Central Asian policy is ambiguous, and commitments misplaced. 

Central Asia is continuously perceived by the EU as a region in need of developmental assistance, which leads to European regional policies that focus on digitalization and climate issues. What Central Asia needs is the establishment of concrete logistical connectivity that will enable efficient flow of products across Eurasia. 


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Niva Yau is a nonresident Fellow with the Atlantic Council’s Global China Hub. Her research focuses on China and Central Asia relations. Specifically, Yau’s work centers around China’s new overseas security management infrastructure and initiatives including foreign bases and stations, the politics of foreign infrastructure, private security companies, intelligence network, in-China security training programs, governance export, information operations, and others. Between 2018 and 2023, Yau was based at the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe Academy in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, where she worked on commissioned research on China’s foreign policy, trade, and security in its western neighborhood, covering Central Asia and Afghanistan.

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