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EU – Central Asia Rule of Law Platform

Under the auspices of the EU’s Rule of Law Initiative for Central Asia, the Rule of Law Platform project acts as a coordination mechanism to facilitate policy dialogue and promote the measures needed to encourage and support legal and governance reforms in each of the Central Asian countries.

The Platform focuses on Administrative Law and Administrative Procedure, Criminal Law and Criminal Procedure, Constitutional Law, Commercial Law and Judicial Reform. These constitute the “common work agenda” agreed on by representatives from the five CA countries at the ministerial conferences in Brussels (2008), Dushanbe (2010), Brussels (2012) and Astana (2014).

Objective

To contribute towards the development of a stable and democratic political framework in the Central Asian partner countries, as established in the EU Strategy for Central Asia.

Purpose

To improve the capacity of Central Asian countries to contribute to the modernisation and reform of their legal and judiciary systems, by developing legislation and practices in line with internationally accepted standards and fostering dialogue with neighboring countries.

Target groups

Major partners in the Central Asian countries are the supreme and constitutional courts as well as the five Ministries of Justice and Ministries of the Interior (Rule of Law Initiative Coordinators), parliamentary organs, lawyers, public prosecutors, legal aid providers, members of other legal professions, training centres, universities and civil society representatives.

Expected results

As agreed at ministerial level, the expected results are the following:

  • The dialogue on rule of law issues between the European Union, the EU Member States and the Central Asian countries is reinforced and improved. It is essential that the experience, and best international standards and practices be shared between European and Central Asian actors and among the Central Asian countries themselves.
  • The training of legal professions has improved and supports actively the legal and judicial reform of Central Asia.
  • The network of rule of law institutions and specialists in Central Asia created during Phase I has further expanded. Closer linkages among legal specialists, think tanks and universities will further the dialogue, mutual understanding and facilitate the transfer of best practices.
  • Quality legal information is disseminated throughout Central Asia, building on the results of the Rule of Law Initiative, other EU initiatives and related projects. Associating the civil society to this process will contribute to increasing public awareness about citizen’s rights and the rule of law.

Project components

Component 1:                                 Fora for dialogue

Conferences and technical working group and seminars will focus on priority areas. Recommendations will be provided to enhance policy coherence and assist the legal and judicial reform.

Component 2:                                 Training

The development of training programmes and syllabi, and the delivery of training sessions for targeted legal professions on the specific topics on the political agenda will be of high importance to the improvement of the legal capacity of Central Asia.

Component 3:                                 Communication/Mapping/Networking

An interactive community of rule of law experts will support the sharing of experience, provision and dissemination of information on the Platform and other EU programmes. Outreach activities will contribute to raise awareness among specific social target groups.

Component 4:                                 Advice facility

Background analyses and studies will complement dialogue events and will serve at developing policy advice.

Participating countries

Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.

Funding

The Rule of Law Platform project is funded by the EU’s Development Cooperation Instrument under the Regional Cooperation component of the EC’ Central Asia Indicative Programme. It has been allocated a budget of approximately 2 million Euro.

Timeframe

36 months (the project started in February 2015)

For more information about the Rule of Law Platform click here.