Former OSCE Chair Says Time Ripe For 'Serious Look' At Reform

The 56-member Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe is facing hard times as observers increasingly question its relevance and effectiveness. At a Permanent Council session in Vienna on January 14, the new Kazakh chairmanship of the OSCE will lay out its plan for the coming year -- an agenda that former OSCE Chairman in Office and Finnish Foreign Minister Alexander Stubb describes as "an extensive and ambitious working program." Stubb, who chaired the organization in 2008, spoke to RFE/RL correspondent Robert Coalson about the challenges the OSCE will face in 2010. READ MORE

For the West, 'Game Over' in Central Asia

By Andrea Bonzanni

Last month, the West officially lost the new "Great Game." The 20-year competition for natural resources and influence in Central Asia between the United States (supported by the European Union), Russia and China has, for now, come to an end, with the outcome in favor of the latter two. Western defeat was already becoming clear with the slow progress of the Nabucco pipeline and the strategic reorientation of some Central Asian republics toward Russia and China. Two recent events, however, confirmed it. READ MORE

If Gas Could Talk

By Sonia Zilberman

Can a deal struck with the EU help the plight of Turkmen – or are we only interested in their country's gas? READ MORE

Russian Participation Within Uzbekistani Oil And Gas Industry: Main Problems, Forecasts And Risks

By V. Paramonov, A.Strokov, O.Stolpovksij

Considering the rapprochement of Russia and Uzbekistan observed in the middle of the first decade of the ХХIst century, the number of Russian companies, and first of all Gazprom and LUKOIL, managed to become leaders within Uzbekistani oil and gas industry and to “book” a number of biggest gas fields in the Republic being supported by the Government of the Russian Federation. READ MORE

A Promising Land: Russian State Companies Expect Major Discoveries In Central Asia

Gazprom and Rosneft are accelerating exploration efforts in Central Asian onshore projects. Their experience may show that interesting opportunities exist away from the Caspian Sea oil and gas fields, where most of the business focuses on. READ MORE

Southern Corridor, White Stream: The Strategic Rationale

By Vladimir Socor

White Stream, the proposed gas pipeline from Georgia to Romania on the seabed of the Black Sea, is intended to maximize European gas imports from Central Asia through the E.U.-initiated Southern Corridor. The Corridor grand design spans Azerbaijan, Georgia, Turkey, and –with White Stream– also a maritime route to European Union territory via the Black Sea. At its other end, the Southern Corridor is premised on a trans-Caspian link to Turkmenistan for massive European imports of Central Asian gas. READ MORE

George Krol About US Relations With Central Asia Republics

George Krol, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs with VOA TV Uzbek Service – Navbahor Imamova. READ MORE

Westerwelle Calls For Protection Of German Opel Jobs In Clinton Meeting

German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle met with US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in Washington Thursday, with a raft of issues on the agenda. The fate of German carmaker Opel is Germany's biggest concern. READ MORE

Merkel Urges US, Europe To 'Tear Down Today's Walls'

Angela Merkel accepted a rare invitation and addressed the US Congress to mark the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. The German chancellor made it clear that climate change is a top priority. READ MORE

Kyrgyzstan's Role In Regional Security

With the war in Afghanistan drawing international attention, the Kyrgyz Republic and other Central Asian countries seem to have fallen off of the American agenda. During his diplomatic visit to the United States, Kyrgyz Foreign Minister Kadyrbek Sarbaev spoke at the Carnegie Endowment about the need to revamp Kyrgyz-US relations. In particular, he stressed that many of the problems plaguing Afghanistan and Kyrgyzstan are in fact regional problems, and that multilateral negotiations and mutual concessions can help find solutions to these problems. READ MORE