The U.S.'s "New Silk Road" Strategy: What Is It? Where Is It Headed?

September 29, 2011 • 4:30 – 6:00 pm EDT

On September 29, 2011 CSIS Russia and Eurasia programa and Central Asia-Caucasus Institute hosted a forum titled “The U.S.'s "New Silk Road" Strategy: what is it? Where is it headed?” The forum provided a platform to discuss the economic and regional strategy in Afghanistan, how it currently stands and what could be done in the future. In particular, the forum focused on the "Modern Silk Road Strategy" that aims to establish Afghanistan as a regional trade hub.  On 20 July, 2011, Secretary of State Clinton used a speech in Chennai, India, to announce the "New Silk Road Strategy" for Afghanistan and the region. In light of the recent developments on this strategy, the speakers addressed questions such as: What is the strategy? What specific tactical measures will accompany it? What does it mean for Afghanistan? Or for Central Asia, Pakistan, India, etc.? Of course, the new strategy does not arise in a vacuum. What has the government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan been doing along these same lines, and what are the ambitious goals of the Asia Development Bank in this same area? Finally, what are the chances that all this activity will prove successful? 

These issues were addressed by Under-Secretary Robert Hormats, U.S. Dept. of State, Director General Juan Miranda, ADB, Manila, and President Karzai’s Senior Economic Advisor, Mr. Sham Bathija.