Xinjiang has been at the core of China’s trade relations across the Eurasian landmass since the millennia-old Silk Road. Owing to its strategic location as China’s westernmost frontier that borders eight countries – Mongolia, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India – Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region today is fittingly seen as the gateway to the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) that envisions trade and cultural connectivity along the ancient Silk Road.
In this episode of the “Vibrant Xinjiang” series, CGTN interviewed people from different regions and industries in Xinjiang to learn more about how the BRI has promoted high-quality development of Xinjiang’s economy and helped locals improve their lives.
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About This Source - CGTN
This story is an English language news item from CGTN. CGTN is a Chinese state-funded broadcaster.
Afghanistan, officially the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, is a landlocked country at the crossroads of Central and South Asia. Afghanistan is bordered by Pakistan to the east and south; Iran to the west; Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, and Tajikistan to the north; and China to the northeast.
Occupying 652,000 square kilometers (252,000 sq mi), it is a mountainous country with plains in the north and southwest. Kabul is the capital and largest city. The population is around 32 million, composed mostly of ethnic Pashtuns, Tajiks, Hazaras, and Uzbeks.
China is the third largest country in the world by area and the largest country in the world by population. Properly known as the People’s Republic of China, the political territory of the country includes the former nations of Tibet and Hong Kong. The capital is Beijing.
India, officially the Republic of India, is a country in South Asia. It is the second-most populous country, the seventh-largest country by land area, and the most populous democracy in the world. New Delhi is the capital.
It has an exceptionally diverse population, with Hindus, Muslims, Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains and other religions speaking over 21 recognised languages.
Kazakhstan, officially the Republic of Kazakhstan, is a transcontinental country mainly located in Central Asia with a smaller portion west of the Ural River in Eastern Europe.
Kazakhstan is the world’s largest landlocked country. It has a population of 18.3 million residents, and has one of the lowest population densities in the world. Since 1997, the capital is Nur-Sultan, formerly known as Astana. It was moved from Almaty, the country’s largest city.
Kazakhstan was the last of the Soviet republics to declare independence during the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991.
Kazakhstan is the most dominant nation of Central Asia economically, generating 60% of the region’s GDP, primarily through its oil and gas industry. It also has vast mineral resources. Kazakhstan is a member of the United Nations (UN), WTO, CIS, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), the Eurasian Economic Union, CSTO, OSCE, OIC, CCTS, and TURKSOY.
Kyrgyzstan, officially the Kyrgyz Republic, also known as Kirghizia, is a landlocked country in Central Asia. It is bordered by Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan and China. Its capital and largest city is Bishkek. Kyrgyzstan’s history spans a variety of cultures and empires.
Mongolia, a nation bordered by China and Russia, is known for vast, rugged expanses and nomadic culture. Its capital, Ulaanbaatar, centers around Chinggis Khaan (Genghis Khan) Square, named for the notorious founder of the 13th- and 14th-century Mongol Empire.
Pakistan, officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, is a country in South Asia. It has a population exceeding 212.2 million, including the world’s second-largest Muslim population. It has an area of 881,913 square kilometres (340,509 square miles).
Pakistan has a 1,046-kilometre (650-mile) coastline along the Arabian Sea and Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by India to the east, Afghanistan to the west, Iran to the southwest, and China to the northeast. It is separated narrowly from Tajikistan by Afghanistan’s Wakhan Corridor in the northwest, and also shares a maritime border with Oman.
Russia, or the Russian Federation, is a transcontinental country located in Eastern Europe and Northern Asia. It extends from the Baltic Sea in the west to the Pacific Ocean in the east, and from the Arctic Ocean in the north to the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea in the south.
Russia spans more than one-eighth of the Earth’s inhabited land area, stretching eleven time zones, and bordering 16 sovereign nations. Moscow is the country’s capital.
The Soviet Union was dissolved in 1991 and since 1993 Russia been governed as a federal semi-presidential republic. Russia is a major great power, with the world’s second-most powerful military, and the fourth-highest military expenditure. As a recognised nuclear-weapon state, the country possesses the world’s largest stockpile of nuclear weapons.
Tajikistan is a country in Central Asia surrounded by Afghanistan, China, Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan. It’s known for rugged mountains, popular for hiking and climbing. The Fann Mountains, near the national capital Dushanbe, have snow-capped peaks that rise over 5,000 meters. The range encompasses the Iskanderkulsky Nature Refuge, a notable bird habitat named for Iskanderkul, a turquoise lake formed by glaciers.
Xinjiang, an autonomous territory in northwest China, is a vast region of deserts and mountains. It’s home to many ethnic minority groups, including the Turkic Uyghur people. The ancient Silk Road trade route linking China and the Middle East passed through Xinjiang, a legacy that can be seen in the traditional open-air bazaars of its oasis cities, Hotan and Kashgar.