The Council of the European Union has appointed Ambassador Terhi Hakala to serve as the EU Special Representative (EUSR) for Central Asia, starting on 1 July 2021.
The EUSRs work under the authority of High Representative for Foreign and Security Policy Josep Borrell and support his work in the implementation of the EU's Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP).
In the duties of the EUSR for Central Asia, the focus is on the EU's continued and comprehensive cooperation with countries in the region. The cooperation covers a broad range of matters in the following sectors: security, the rule of law, environment, water, climate change, education, and human rights with an emphasis on the position of women.
In line with the European Union Strategy for Central Asia, it is also important to promote the development of the business environment and to stimulate investments as well as to foster sustainable connectivity.
Ms. Hakala is a Finnish career diplomat with extensive experience in the EU's Eastern neighbourhood and Central Asia, including in the context of OSCE. She served in various diplomatic postings abroad, including at Ambassador level, among others in Russia, South and South-East Asia, and Geneva. She was most recently Ambassador of Hybrid Affairs, Technology and Security in the Foreign Ministry of Finland. The importance of the Strategy for Central Asia is growing also because of neighbouring Afghanistan.
“In Central Asia, the EU is a welcome and balancing partner to help tackle the challenges of the region. The EU has many tools that can be used to promote recovery from the global pandemic. The mandate of the EUSR for Central Asia emphasises the need to strengthen regional cooperation and stability in collaboration with the countries of the region and other international actors. In the coming years, this will be even more important than before,” Hakala notes.
Earlier, Peter Burian worked as the EU Special Representative for Central Asia.