By Mamuka Tsereteli (10/01/2014 issue of the CACI Analyst)
Newly emerging geopolitical and economic realities are dictating an increased focus on developing the land transportation corridor between Asia and Europe. Asian producers and European importers are seeking faster ways of delivering business orders to European consumers at competitive prices, while there is also an increased flow of goods from Europe to Asia. Maritime routes are cheap but slow, and there is a growing competition between different land transportation options from China, India, Pakistan and other countries via Central Asia to Europe. One of them is a multimodal transportation option from Central Asia through the South Caucasus to the Black Sea or Turkey and beyond to Europe. Regional leadership and U.S. and EU support is required for it to succeed.
By Richard Weitz (09/03/2014 issue of the CACI Analyst)
President Barack Obama’s recent characterization of China as a global free rider certainly applies in Afghanistan. Although China has declined to join the NATO-led International Security Force in Afghanistan or even allow its members to use Chinese territory to supply their forces in Afghanistan, Chinese firms have been benefiting from the massive economic and security contributions of other countries to Afghanistan. But that time is ending and China and the West need to strike a new and more balanced bargain there. Chinese alarm about Afghanistan is rising as U.S. concerns and commitments are declining.
The Central Asia-Caucasus Analyst is a biweekly publication of the Central Asia-Caucasus Institute & Silk Road Studies Program, a Joint Transatlantic Research and Policy Center affiliated with the American Foreign Policy Council, Washington DC., and the Institute for Security and Development Policy, Stockholm. For 15 years, the Analyst has brought cutting edge analysis of the region geared toward a practitioner audience.