The New Silk Road

The New Silk Road

2019, Economics  -    -  Playlist 12 Comments
Ratings: 7.57/10 from 67 users.

China's global reach and influence have made them a true global superpower, a status they are determined to widen ever further through the construction of a complex set of interconnections between Asia and all of Europe. This is one of the most ambitious infrastructure projects of the modern age. In the two-part documentary The New Silk Road, two journalists examine the intricacies of its construction, the Chinese interests that are likely to benefit most from it, and the citizens along the route who are bracing for its disastrous impact on their way of life.

In the first part of the documentary, the filmmakers travel from the bustling metropolis of Shenzhen, China to Pakistan. The idea of merging the East and West might sound idyllic and harmonious on the surface. But upon closer examination, the cracks begin to show. In Cambodia, residents speak of feeling like strangers in their own home. "The Chinese have taken over our city," one confesses. Rents are increasing, and pushing out native citizens in favor of more affluent Chinese visitors. Crime is on the rise and the local authorities are stretched thin.

The film's second segment follows the route from Kyrgyzstan in central Asia to West Germany's Duisburg. The construction of new infrastructure represents a double edged sword for many. In spite of the Chinese investments, the cities that dot this route are suffering mounting debt and environmental issues as a result of these intrusive elements. Questions emerge as to the true intention of the Chinese in constructing these passages. Are they truly aimed at opening trade and other opportunities between neighboring nations? Or are there possibly more nefarious motives at play involving military domination? Suspicions abound, but none feel empowered enough to slow the forward thrust of "progress".

By land and sea, the filmmakers behind The New Silk Road travel thousands of miles to uncover the truth behind the facade. Along the way, they visit a number of sites that still harbor echoes of the ancient Silk Road network, and encounter everyday citizens who are caught between the promise of revitalization and the potential for despair.

Directed by: Normen Odenthal, Thomas Reichart

More great documentaries

Notify of

Oldest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
1 year ago

IF and only IF we, all of the 65 concerned countries PROTECT our identity will this mamoth project be of world utility. Thank you.

Cris Sale
2 years ago

Its true that Chinese, by history, never conquer other nations just like West did. I am a Filipino, we are also experiencing problem with Chinese in our sea border in present day. I just want to think fair that in pre-colonial period (before spanish colonize the Philippines), Chinese and Filipinos are already trading goods, It was peaceful trade until the colonizers from West came and together with their religion (Catholicism) as a front, our forefathers enslaved and stripped of our identity.

3 years ago

Okay lets agree with west that China is mistreating ughur minority in XingXang region. Then let them make accept they also have mistreated muslims from Iraq to Afghanistan and even gone further to brand them terrorists. Thanks to west rest nations are also following path and mistreating muslims by branding them rebels and terrorists.
West also fears somthing thats different from them and before plundering them they always play victim games.
Hello west im muslim please brand me terrorist also

3 years ago

Yes everything Chinese do is evil... and west has made all where it has landed prosperous... west propaganda makes us sick.

3 years ago

Kaka Singh G, as whole nation u r confirmed terrorists, see ur occupied Kashmir, what are you doing with the whole innocent people n u r calous. Next will be the target of Modee is ur tribe i. e. Sikhs. ⌛double giggle.

Muhammad Riaz
3 years ago

This is one of the series of propaganda efforts against Chinese development initiative. American and western businessmen are spending sleepless nights because of this. What the western multinationals invested in Pakistan was McDonald, KFC, Nestle, Lever Brothers, etc. who are here just to capture our consumer market. They did nothing for our infrastructure development. China on the contrary is lying the foundation for future development in the shape of Roads, power projects, Special Economic zones, communication networks. We are not myopic in understanding all this.

3 years ago

Funny how the West didn't think about developing the Silk Road after the fall of the Berlin Wall.