The Black Sea region rarely hit the media headlines until the outbreak of war in Georgia in 2008, yet its importance as a focus of European Union (EU) external policy making had already been growing for several years. The area is fascinating and diverse, comprising both large and small states, with a mixture of democracies and more authoritarian regimes. Traditionally a central foreign policy concern for Russia and Turkey, since the end of the Cold War, the EU and the US have become increasingly involved in the many dimensions of Black Sea politics. This book brings together a broad range of specialists on the region to analyze the challenge of divergent agendas both within and outside the EU. More specifically it looks at how the EU's enlargement to include states on the Black Sea shore has brought about new external policies including the European Neighbourhood Policy, Black Sea Synergy and the Eastern Partnership, all representing subtly different aims and interests. The various sections in the book also examine regionalization, conflict resolution, security, relationships between the Black Sea's states and last but not least, the vital issue of energy which has begun to dominate the discussion of the region. Designed to further the debate on the future of EU policies for the Black Sea region, this book is an essential resource for researchers, students and others in search of a coherent picture of the inter-relationship of EU initiatives and policies in the region.
'Provides essential insights into EU policy towards the region, security issues, epitomised by the Russian-Georgian conflict, and on-going rivalries over energy and pipelines.' Fraser Cameron, Director, EU Russia Centre and Board Member International Centre for Black Sea Studies (ICBSS) 'This is an important collection of essays by leading commentators on the European Union's policy toward its eastern frontier. The judicious and balanced analysis sheds light on the many challenges confronting Europe around the Black Sea - from unresolved conflicts to jockeying over energy resources and pipeline routes.' Charles King, Georgetown University, USA 'This edited book gives much needed analytical attention to the opportunities and shortcomings of EU policies towards the region... well-argued and thoughtful analyses on the development of EU policies towards the region and the tensions that emerge between EU-focused approaches and member states' interests, as well as the responses from Black Sea countries... The book as a whole is an important contribution to examining the current state of relations between the EU and the region, as well as regional (non-) cooperative dynamics and the role of other regional powers in affecting EU policies... the book provides a well-balanced and solid overview of EU/Black Sea relations.' Political Studies Review