The Central Asia region comprises the countries are characterized as landlocked countries on the Eurasian continent: they are: Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. They are often referred to as the ‘-stans’ and are most famous for the Silk Road, which transported goods, people, and cultures between Asia and Europe. It is a diverse region with a mix of upper middle and low income countries with major strategic importance due to their geographic location and natural resource endowments. Huge mountain ranges, deserts, and vast steppe lie between the Caspian Sea and the Chinese border leading to geographic extremes and nomadic cultures.
The Central Asian countries face major environmental challenges and are directly affected by climate change. They share similar constraints to water and energy resources. The EU-Central Asia Strategy highlights the environment and water management issues as one of key areas for intensified policy dialogue and enhanced cooperation between the EU and the Central Asia. The EU-Central Asia Platform for environment and water management is established in order to meet these challenges.