Welcome to the Central Asia Education Platform (CAEP) Project Website, the portal for a dialogue on education sector reforms in Vocational Education and Training (VET) and Higher Education (HE) within the Central Asia region.

In the framework of the EU Central Asia Strategy for a New Partnership (2007), aimed at the five Central Asia (CA) states, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan, the European Education Initiative has been launched.

The objectives set within the European Education Initiative for Central Asia are:

  • to contribute to the adaptation of the education systems of Central Asia states to the needs of the globalised world and to cooperate with major international partners and donors supporting educational programmes and institutions,
  • to support all levels of education, including VET and HE, staff and student mobility for instance under the Erasmus+ programme, and on a bilateral basis.

The Platform was launched in February 2012 for an initial period of 3 years (first phase). The second phase of CAEP was originally planned to run from March 2015 to March 2018 and was extended at the start of 2018 to run until March 2019 (see news item).

CAEP is a key pillar of the European Education Initiative for CA to organise activities, regional and national seminars of direct interest for each of the Central Asia partners in the field of Education.

During its first phase, the Platform promoted policy dialogue and supported reforms in the education sector within the Central Asia region:

  • by facilitating a technical and a policy dialogue between the EU and CA countries through organising seminars and workshops on national and regional level (e.g. in Astana 2013, Bishkek 2014 and Istanbul 2015),
  • by developing a project website and database of existing education related projects financed by the EU and other donors as well as by CA countries to assist donor project coordination,
  • by designing, delivering and discussing two studies on “Teacher Policies” and “Quality in Vocational Education and Training and Higher Education” on national and regional level.

In the second phase, CAEP continues to enhance co-operation between the European Union and Central Asia, as well as regional co-operation between the countries of Central Asia, in order to strengthen education reforms in the region. It will also serve to better co-ordinate all donors’ actions in the education sector while enhancing ownership by Central Asia countries.

The EU Member States, notably Latvia and Poland, are actively engaged in this process – a first Ministerial Meeting of Education Ministers from Central Asia and the EU successfully took place under the Latvian Presidency of the Council of the EU in Riga in June 2015. The high-level representatives both from Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan and from the EU endorsed a Joint Communiqué and adopted an Indicative Roadmap of Activities for the CAEP Project Phase II.

The Second Meeting of the European Union and Central Asia Ministers for Education was held on 23 June 2017 in Astana, Kazakhstan. The event was a great success and concluded with the Ministers and delegates agreeing on the Astana Declaration as a basis for future mutual co-operation in the fields of Higher Education (HE) and Vocational Education and Training (VET). Ministers and high-level representatives from all Central Asia countries presented reviews of the progress being made in their countries in the fields of HE and VET and discussed how to strengthen further cooperation between the EU and Central Asia as well as between the countries themselves. Thirteen representatives of EU member states participated in the meeting and contributed to the policy dialogue between EU and CA.