Revival of the Great Silk Road would not only enhance trade and investment in the region but will also serve as a catalyst to connect nations and cultures. Great Silk Road was the old trade route which initiated from the Chinese ancient city of Xian.
Trade on the Silk Road played a significant role in the development of the civilizations of China, Pakistan, India, Persia, Europe and even Arabia. Not only Silk was traded but the route also transported many other goods. Silk road also had great influence over the cultures of the world.
The Central Asian region had become an integral part of the world of Muslim civilization ever since the 7th Century. The ancient Turkmen city of Merv (Mary) used to be the so-called Gate to Central Asia. It was especially important in terms of trade and politics in the 9th – 10th centuries.
Turkmenistan is at the crossroad of Europe and Asia, with convenient geographical location, on the new Silk Road. Rich natural oil and gas reserves and a stable political climate allow our country to implement national transport resources for ensuring the Euro-Asian links.
Turkmenistan was the first among the countries of the region to demonstrate at the end of the last century qualitative new approaches for the revival of the ancient Silk Road. The striking example is commissioning of an international railway (Tedjen-Serahs-Meshed) in May 1996, which opened for the countries of Central Asia the shortest way to the transport networks of Iran, Turkey, the Middle East and the Far East.
The Ambassador of Turkmenistan in Pakistan, Atadjan Movlamov has said that the Great Silk Road is considered to be one of the successful achievements of ancient civilizations and Turkmenistan believes that Silk Route as one of the important means to connect nations and cultures.
Addressing a discussion titled “Turkmenistan – Heart of the Great Silk Road”, Ambassador Atadjan Movlamov was of the view that Turkmenistan gives special attention to connectivity among countries and nations.
The Center for Global & Strategic Studies (CGSS) had arranged an interactive session in collaboration with the Embassy of Turkmenistan on “Turkmenistan – Heart of the Great Silk Road”. The aim and focus of the session was to highlight and provide an opportunity for the participants to understand the importance of Turkmenistan as a pivotal part of the ancient Silk Rout.
The ambassador said that the slogan, “Turkmenistan – Heart of the Great Silk Road”, reflects the concept of modern development of the country, which is based on centuries-old historical experience, cultural traditions, rich spiritual heritage and human values. The Great Silk Road is considered to be one of the successful achievements of ancient civilizations. Turkmenistan pays special attention to the popularization of the phenomenon of the Great Silk Route as a factor, connecting the nations and cultures.
Major General(R) Hafiz Masroor Ahmed, Vice President Centre for Global & Strategic Studies speaking on the occasion said that Turkmenistan and Pakistan enjoy cordial relations, which are characterized by bonds of historical, cultural and religious affinity and mutual respect. Both sides attach great importance to the friendship between their people and the need to further strengthen their cooperation in diverse fields.
Dr. Mehmood Ul Hassan Khan, Regional Expert: Turkmenistan & CIS highlighted the Energy Policy of Turkmenistan. He stated that Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan and India (TAPI) Gas Pipeline confirms valuable contribution of energy policy of Turkmenistan.
Mr. Azat Satly kuliev highlighted the importance of international trade routes from China to Middle East via Amul, Merv, Sarakhs, Abiverd, Nisa, from Near East countries to Russia via Dehistan and Kunyaurgench, to India via Zemm used to cross the territory of Turkmenistan in ancient and medieval times and also the prospects of tourism and Desert Race Amul-Hazar 2018, International Rally, which was held in Turkmenistan.
For centuries, the southern part of the land Silk Roads, wound its way to south from Central Asia, across some of the highest mountains in the world, down through modern Pakistan and then curved east into India or continued south to the Arabian Sea.
Pakistani authorities tried to revive the old trade routes through diverse initiatives. These efforts received a boost with the opening, two decades ago, of the Karakoram Highway which joins the remote northern reaches of the country with the Chinese Region of Xinjiang the historical routes of trades and exchange are still alive.
Today, President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov has developed his own concept of cooperation with the international community in the field of transport and thereby made a worthy contribution to the revival of the Silk Road. The main purpose of the concept of the Turkmen leader is to promote on the world stage, evidence-based and effective from a practical point of view, models of multi-stakeholder partnerships in this area, creating a set of appropriate conditions necessary for the intensification and increase of efficiency of the international transport-transit messages.
Published in Melange intl. Magazine in August 2018.