The United States is promoting a “New Silk Road” to link Afghanistan to Southern and Central Asia via an interconnected web of transit corridors. This would transform the regional trade environment, tear down commercial barriers, and offer economic benefits for all. Some in Washington policy circles have suggested that the Northern Distribution Network (NDN) can lay the foundations for the New Silk Road, but our research indicates that the NDN has not resulted in the broad-based benefits and reforms that were expected, including greater regional cooperation, reduced corruption, and improvements in the economic status of Central Asian citizens.
Please join the Open Society Foundations Washington Office for a discussion with Lynne Tracy and Graham Lee, who will speak about his paper recently released by the Open Society Central Eurasia Project, “The New Silk Road and the Northern Distribution Network: A Golden Road to Central Asian Trade Reform?” The presentation will be followed by a discussion of recommendations for the U.S. government to further a successful New Silk Road strategy.
- Graham Lee, Freelance Writer, Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan
- Les Viguerie, Office Director for Central Asia, U.S. Department of State
- Jeff Goldstein, Senior Policy Analyst, Open Society Foundations (moderator)
Lunch will be served.