Panel Session «The rebirth of the Great Silk Road»

Panel Session «The rebirth of the Great Silk Road»

19 March 2015

The rebirth of the Great Silk Road – one of the most ancient trade routes - is a complex and multi-vector policy that is based on the idea of resuming transcontinental cooperation among the countries of the Eurasian continent.

The Great Silk Road rebirth Project is not purely an infrastructural initiative. It is a new concept of intergovernmental relations. The range of potential directions of cooperation is not restricted to any kind of collaboration as not restricted the number of countries that could join the project. More than 50 countries might become a part of the project that could unite almost the half of the world’s population.

The Silk Road rebirth initiative embracing the strategic, economic, cultural and infrastructural aspects of cooperation might become the largest Eurasian project.

China and Kazakhstan conduct few projects on building and developing transportation routes and are among the most active participants of the Silk Road renewal initiative. Apart from that countries from Central and South Asia, Middle East and Europe show keen interest in renewing the historical route.

Kazakhstan occupying central position in the Trans-Eurasian system of communication takes an active part in renewing the Great Silk Road. Thus, “New Silk Road” project aimed at creating a single complex of high level quality hubs is now under realization. Added to the “New Silk Road” project and in order to ensure consistency of the national policy a new state program “Nurly - Zhol” is being developed. “Nurly - Zhol” is a state program within which it is expected that the major infrastructural projects such as “Western Europe – Western China” along with another development projects are to be financed further. The total amount of funds allocated to the program “Nurly – Zhol” is 27 bln.US dollars. In addition around 3 bln US dollars are to be allocated from the National Fund on an annual basis. Apart from that “Nurly – Zhol” presupposes involvement of the world’s leading financial organizations such as WB, ADB, EBRD and etc. to budgeting of the program.

Starting from 2013 when an initiative on building silk road economic belt was announced China commenced a new strategy of economical development. For the purpose of realization of the project the Government of China has established Silk Way Fund with a total amount of 40 bln. US dollars.

New Silk Way as a new transcontinental bridge integrating the whole continent is not an infrastructural overarching goal. It is a global system of economic cooperation and communication representing a new level of interaction between countries and subregions.

The Silk Road rebirth initiative will provide most of the states in the region with an opportunity to create new industries, new enterprises and the whole set of new regional clusters and markets.

The New Silk Road is a recent phenomenon but in spite of its novelty it has obtained a wide circulation among the academia, international organization, state bodies and other experts. For international organizations such as UNECO the ultimate goal of the Silk Road rebirth is to recover the cultural and historical heritage of the Silk Road. For countries such as Kazakhstan, China, Russia and other states from EU, Central Asia and Caucasus region restoring the Great Silk Road is aimed at infrastructural development of transport and logistics opportunities increasing transit potential of the Trans-Eurasian region. Overall, it is obvious that restoring the historical crossroad of civilizations, cultures and people on the territory of the Silk Road is a complex and massive phenomenon that covers various ways of cooperation.

The panel session “The Rebirth of the Great Silk Road” that is to be held during the VIII Astana Economic Forum building a platform of communication for the leading experts, policy makers and media will provide with a unique opportunity to share the views on the revival of the great economic and historical route.

Participants. Leading experts from EU, China, Turkey, Middle East and Central Asia will be a part of the forthcoming session. Added to this it is expected that the representatives of the world financial organizations will join the discussion.

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