Long-distance trade has played a major role in cultural, religious and art exchanges that took place between major centers of civilization in Europe and Asia during antiquity. Some of these trade routes were in use for centuries, but by the beginning

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Long-distance trade has played a major role in cultural, religious and art exchanges that took place between major centers of civilization in Europe and Asia during antiquity. Some of these trade routes were in use for centuries, but by the beginning

 

 

History of Ancient Euro-Asian Trade Routes

Long-distance trade has played a major role in cultural, religious and art exchanges that took place between major centers of civilization in Europe and Asia during antiquity. Some of these trade routes were in use for centuries, but by the beginning of the first century AD, traders, diplomats and travelers (theoretically) could cross the ancient world from Britain and Spain in the west to China and Japan in the east. Commercial routes have mainly served to transport raw materials, food and luxury goods from areas with surpluses to other areas where supplies are scarce. Some areas were monopolizing certain materials or goods. For example, China supplied Western Asia and the Mediterranean with silk, while spices were obtained mainly from South Asia. These goods were transported across vast distances - either through the back of wild animal or naval vessels - along the silk and spice routes, which were the main arteries of communication between the various ancient empires of the ancient world. Another important commercial road, known as the Incense Route, was dominated by Arabs, who brought incense and bitter camel carriages from the south of the Arabian Peninsula.

 

Cities have grown along these rich commercial routes by providing services to traders and working as an international market. Some, such as Palmyra and Petra on the outskirts of the Syrian desert, flourished mainly as commercial centers supplying commercial convoys and controlling trade routes. They also became cultural and art centers, where people could meet from different ethnic and cultural backgrounds and overlap.

 

By the end of the first century BC, there was a great expansion in international trade involving five contiguous forces, namely, the Roman Empire, the Parthian Empire, the Kushan Empire, the Pseudo-Confederacy of Xongo, and the Han Empire. Although travel was hard and knowledge of geography incomplete, many contacts were formed with the expansion of these empires - the dissemination of ideas, beliefs and customs among heterogeneous peoples - and with the transfer of valuable goods over long distances through trade and exchange, gifts and payment of tribute. The transport was carried out on land using river boats and transport animals, especially the bacterium bale. Traveling by sea depends on the prevailing winds in the Indian Ocean, the monsoon, blowing from the southwest during the summer months and from the northeast in autumn.

An extensive network of strategic locations (Empuria) enabled the exchange, distribution and storage of goods, from the Greek-Roman city of Antioch, through the Syrian desert of Arpadmur to Catsiphon (the capital of Parthi) and Salukia on the Tigris River. From there the road led east through the Zagros Mountains to the cities of Ekpatana and Merv, where a branch turned north via Bukhara and Ferghana to Mongolia and the other leading to Bactria.

The port of Spacino Charax on the Persian Gulf was a great center for maritime trade. The empty goods were sent there along a network of roads throughout the Parthian Empire - the top of the Tigris to the Istifun to the Euphrates to Dura Yerubus; and through the caravan cities in the Arab and Syrian desert. Many of these routes ended in the eastern Mediterranean ports, of which goods were distributed to cities throughout the Roman Empire.

The trade routes were the highways of communication in the ancient world. New inventions, religious beliefs, technical methods, languages, social customs, as well as goods and raw materials were transferred by people who moved from one place to another to do business. These links are reflected, for example, in the sculptural techniques of Gandhara (modern Pakistan and northern India) and Gaul (modern France), both influenced by Hellenistic patterns popular with the Romans

Other routes through the Arab Sahara ended in the city of Petra Nabatieh, where new convoys moved to Gaza and other ports on the Mediterranean Sea or from the north to Damascus or East to Parthia. A network of marine routes connected the incense ports in the southern Arabian Peninsula and Somalia with ports in the Persian Gulf and India in the east, as well as with ports on the Red Sea, from which goods were transported by land to the Nile and then to Alexandria.

 

Asia-Europe & Africa Transit Corridors in Late Eras

The ancient Silk Road is one of the historical passages that played an important role in the growth and prosperity of peoples and civilizations in the middle ages. The route was a combination of 15,000 km of interconnected land and sea routes, used by convoys and ships to transport commercial goods between china, Asia minor and central Asia, the Arabian peninsula, Africa, and Europe.

These roads played a role in the convergence of cultures and peoples and facilitate exchanges between them. Traders were forced to learn the languages ​​and traditions of the countries they traveled through. Many travelers paved these roads to engage in the intellectual and cultural exchange that was rampant in cities along these roads.

The pattern of traveling through the silk road has evolved along the same routes, with cities along the route providing food, water, convenience for travelers, and ready-to-trade goods through several guesthouses or large guest houses. Asia-Europe and Africa transit corridors in later eras

The ancient silk road is one of the historical passages that played an important role in the growth and prosperity of peoples and civilizations in the middle ages. The route was a combination of 15,000 kilometers of interconnected land and sea routes, used by convoys and ships to transport commercial goods between china, Asia minor and central Asia, the Arabian peninsula, Africa, and Europe.

These roads played a role in the convergence of cultures and peoples and facilitate exchanges between them. Traders were forced to learn the languages ​​and traditions of the countries they traveled through. Many travelers paved these roads to engage in the intellectual and cultural exchange that was rampant in cities along these roads.

The pattern of traveling through the silk road has evolved along the same routes, with cities along the route providing food, water, convenience for travelers, and ready-to-trade goods through several guesthouses or large guest houses.

The term "silk road" is a relatively recent name, as it has no specific name throughout its history. It bears several names, including the "Jade" road, the "precious stones" road, the "Buddhist" road, the "Pottery and pottery "Spice" and others, and each name of those names in fact, part of the Silk Road. The German geologist, Ferdinand “Von Richthofen”, launched the name Silk Road in relation to China's most famous monopolist and kept its secret for nearly 3,000 years.

The Silk Road is about 4,000 kilometers long and has more than 40 nationalities. The road starts from the ancient Chinese city of Chiang An, now known as Sayan. In the 10th century, the two million people were considered to be the most beautiful cities in the world and only the current Iraqi capital (Baghdad) competes with. Saiyan was a meeting of all nationalities from all parts of the world. After this breakthrough, the road leads to the west side of the Chinese territory until it reaches the city of Tonhung, which was called the Cave of the Thousand Buddha, the last border post in China. (Tian Shan Dafan) located in the southern region, in line with the northern areas of the basin (Narim Mara) in the city of Keshjar, and the basin (Nurfan), and then follow the path to a large corridor called (Trik Dafan Tashkent branch Samarkand Bukhara and Mero), and then the Iranian highlands and the most important Copts (Hamdan current), and thereafter It is divided into two directions: the first and it runs in the direction of Marfa and Odessa (Ufa) in the Turkish territory, then after Antioch while the second goes towards Baghdad, Tadmor and Damascus until it ends with the Soor of Lebanon.

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With the spread of wars at that time, traders took the sea routes away from this road, because they are safer than land roads till road lost its importance and its trade began to shrink gradually and trade shifted to other routes across the Indian Ocean from South Asia to North Africa, Suez.

 

The main reasons for stopping this route are the great sea discoveries, the decline of empires, the discovery of how to manufacture silk in Europe, in addition to many conflicts and ethnic, religious and political wars whose objectives were purely economic, as well as the closure of parts of the road by the Turks and the opening of the Suez Canal in Egypt in 1869.

 

 

China's Ambition to Revitalize the Silk Road

& the Future of Transport Corridors in Turkey

 

China is now firmly headed to become the world's largest trading empire. The New Silk Road, known as one road belt, is the economic road initiative of the Silk Road and Silk Road of the 21st century. The new Silk Road aims at reviving and developing the historic Silk Road through the construction of natural gas and oil pipelines, construction of road networks, Iron and electric power lines and the Internet, and the new Silk Road consists of a road and a sea road.

 

The project concerns China's attempts to build a strategic line and a strategic partnership extending this route from the east towards Europe through Iran and Turkey. This line depends on what Iran calls the resistance axis, but now the strategies have changed. China and the European Union are betting on Iran and Turkey to establish this geostrategic partnership.

 

The new Silk Road initiative, -praised by French President Emmanuel Macaron from China- includes infrastructure projects, that will strengthen Beijing's trade ties in Asia, Europe and Africa.

 

 

The Belt and Road Initiative is an ambitious effort to improve regional cooperation and connectivity on a continental scale. The initiative aims to strengthen infrastructure, trade and investment links between China and about 65 other countries, which together account for more than 30 percent of world GDP, 62 percent of the population and 75 percent of known energy reserves. The project consists mainly of the Silk Road Economic Belt, linking China to Central and South Asia, then to Europe, and the New Silk Road linking China to South East Asia, the Gulf States, North Africa and Europe. Six other economic corridors have been identified to connect other countries with the belt and the road. The scope of the initiative continues to be shaped - and more recently, the initiative has been interpreted as open to all countries as well as to international and regional organizations.

The Belt and Road Initiative can transform the economic environment in which economies in the region operate. Regional cooperation on the reform of new transport infrastructure and policy improvement can significantly reduce trade costs and improve connectivity, leading to increased cross-border trade and investment and improved growth in the region. For example, shipping times from China to Central Europe take about 30 days, with most of the goods traveling by sea. The duration of shipping by train to 16 days, but due to the current infrastructure, the cost is much greater. Improving the capacity and network of railway infrastructure can therefore radically change the average travel time. While rail transport will be more expensive than the shipping of these routes, the reduction of time and cost will have important consequences for some goods that affect the choice of method and the overall flow of international trade.

Turkey had early realized the issue of the infrastructure of the belt and road infrastructure and had taken its interest in its strategic plans, both along the geographical area and in the parts connecting the two continents. The following are some of the most important strategic projects of the Turkish State to reflect the preparations for launching the new Silk Road project in particular, or to secure a network of international routes for their land corridors:

  • The Turkish Minister of Transport reported that infrastructure projects to improve the quality of transport over the past 14 years exceeded the total value of 100 billion dollars
  • The new bridge project on the Strait of Chunak Qala, which separates the Aegean Sea and Marmara in western Turkey
  • The governments of Turkey and China signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) at the G-20 summit in Antalya, Turkey, on the Silk Road project and the promotion of trade and maritime relations between the two countries, in addition to a memorandum of understanding on the "Central Corridor" initiative, Elements of the restoration project of the historic Silk Road
  • Railway projects such as Marmarai, which connects the two continents of Europe and Asia in Turkey, opened in 2013, the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars line opened in June 2018 and the Turkish Adran-Kars line, which is being negotiated in cooperation with China, Large and important part of the new Silk Road
  • The Eurasia project, a three-story ground tunnel  crossing the Bosphorus, will be open before the end of this year, eight months before the scheduled date for its opening.
  • The opening of the Oveit tunnel, which connects the states of Riza (northeast) and Erzurum (east) of Turkey, to traffic after all preventive measures have been taken. The tunnel is one of the most important passages connecting the two regions of the sea
  • Black and eastern Anatolia. The tunnel will facilitate traffic from the Black Sea, to Nakhichevan (territory of Azerbaijan), Iran, Georgia and Armenia. "
  • Three Chinese public companies bought the port of Comport near Istanbul, the third in the country, which is a vital axis between the "Belt and the Road".

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