The Silk Road was the major commercial route extending from mainland Asia on to Europe and Africa that has continued its significant logistical role for a period of almost 2000 years up until the early modern times. It was named after the Chinese silk transported over to the West. This main commercial route, has also continued to function as a basic link between the peoples and cultures along it for centuries.
In todays world of expanding globalization, the countries along this route, with Turkey at its centre, similarly figure prominently on todays global economic, social, cultural and political agenda. The recent academic efforts to re-evaluate and rejuvenate the Silk Road in all of its various facets have culminated in the idea to organize an international conference on the subject. The International Silk Road Congress: To Rethink a Region of Commerce, Cooperation and Peace, is being organised in collboration with various institutions and universities, and under the coordination of the Ankara Centre for Thought and Research and Istanbul Commmerce University. It is planned to be held in Istanbul, Turkey on 27-30 October 2013.
29 October 2013 is the date on which the Marmaray underwater tunnel in Istanbul that will constitute the final link on the Peking-London Railway will be officially inaugurated. With the completion of the said project, a continuous railway connection on the Silk Road will have become operational for the first time in history. It is expected that the above Conference will also provide an opportunity to add this major development on to the agenda of the World academic circles over a wide geographic area, extending from China on the Pacific to Western Europe and beyond.
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