The Fabric Road to Power: Geography of the Textiles Trade Along the New Silk Road and China’s Path to Geopolitical Dominance Through the Textiles Supply Chain
14 Pages Posted: 1 Mar 2019
Date Written: December 1, 2016
With the rise of China as a global economic powerhouse and its reach for influence beyond its borders, countries located along the historic Silk Road are experiencing dramatic changes. China’s ambitious One Belt, One Road development initiative aspires to connect the People’s Republic to the rest of Eurasia; and in addition to fostering economic growth in the vast region, its strategic intent is to give China a geopolitical advantage on the entire landmass. The purpose of this paper is to investigate how the physical and human geography of the land-based Silk Road Economic Belt is influencing, and will influence, the textile and apparel supply chain and, with it, economic relations among several participating countries — China, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Iran, Turkey, and Italy. In addition, this paper argues why China’s influence over the Eurasian textiles supply chain can be its greatest geopolitical advantage — even more so than its control over abundant fossil fuel resources.
Keywords: One Belt, One Road, China, Geography, Transportation, Silk Road, Central Asia, Iran, Turkey, Eurasia, Geopolitics, Mackinder, Textiles, Growth, Strategic, Supply Chain, Economic, Geology, Globalization, Trade, International Trade
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