The terms of Chinese loans, many affiliated with the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), often contain extensive confidentiality clauses that tie debtors' hands in what critics call 'debt-trap diplomacy'.
Kazakhstan is becoming an increasingly attractive destination for migrants at time when Russia is making things more difficult for Central Asians.
Kazakhs have long feared Chinese buyers would purchase massive amounts of Kazakh farmland and turn their country into 'a buckle' for Beijing's Belt and Road Initiative.
International aid is helping the neighbours prosper together and prevent desperation that can drive extremism.
People in Central Asia are increasingly voicing opinions about the need to focus on regional economic integration -- but the Kremlin is working overtime to prevent that from happening.
The creation of a single financial regulatory body will have far-reaching economic and political consequences for Central Asia, including Russia controlling the currencies of member states.
Moscow has called on illegal migrants, many of whom come from Central Asia, to leave the country by June 15 or face deportation.
Moscow sells its EEU as giving members favourable conditions for multilateral trade, but in reality the rules of the union are not the same for everyone -- especially Russia.
Stakeholders are calling for an investigation into the deal that many see simply as a Russian takeover of the country's second largest gold mine.
A long history of abuse, discrimination, demands for bribes, being cheated out of their pay, and beatings by civilians and even by police are keeping migrants home.