The author of this OpEd reports that Central Asian Republics (CAR)—Iran, China and India—have been exploring new trade routes for the past decade. However, the Russia–Ukraine conflict has acted as a catalyst to expedite the process.


This article by Patial RC, writing for Eurasia Review, makes the following points:
  • Moving shipping containers from China through Russia to the European Union had become vital to Beijing's Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). 
  • Still, Russia's invasion of Ukraine—and the Western sanctions on Russia that followed—have forced China to search for alternative trade routes.
  • The Chinese alternative is likely to be the Trans-Caspian International Transport Route (TITR).
  • TITR is a 6,500-kilometer network of roads, railroads, and ports stretching across Kazakhstan, the Caspian Sea, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Turkey, and Europe.
  • India and Iran have activated a shorter route between Russia and India—which is also likely to benefit Central Asian countries.


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