Initiated by the Economic Cooperation Organisation (ECO) and organised in partnership with the International Road Transport  Union (IRU) in cooperation with its national Member Associations located in the ECO region, the IRU-ECO Silk Road Truck Caravan 2010 “Driving Progress from Islamabad to Istanbul” aims to further develop Euro-Asian road transport and strengthen trade and economic cooperation within the region and with the rest of the world.

Supported by seven ECO member countries (Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Iran, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Turkey and Turkmenistan), the IRU-ECO Silk Road Truck Caravan 2010 will significantly contribute to help landlocked economies on the Eurasian landmass currently deserted by economic activity to reap the full benefits of globalisation, hence driving progress and prosperity.

Purpose of the Project

The IRU-ECO Silk Road Truck Caravan 2010 will enable ECO’s Transit Transport Coordination Council (TTCC) to effectively monitor the implementation of the ECO Transit Transport Framework Agreement (TTFA) across the ECO region, and collect important road transport data, such as border waiting times, customs procedures, road user charges, as well as non-physical barriers to road transport operations.

The IRU-ECO Silk Road Truck Caravan 2010 will also provide a unique opportunity for the IRU and its Member Associations to promote road transport and emphasise its instrumental role in driving economic growth, social progress and ultimately peace in the entire ECO region.

The concrete objectives of the IRU-ECO Silk Road Truck Caravan 2010 project are:

  1. To collect data en route on the state and capacity of existing infrastructure;
  2. To collect data en route on non-physical impediments to road transport across the Eurasian landmass;
  3. To promote the implementation of UN multilateral trade and road transport facilitation instruments;
  4. To communicate the importance of  road transport as a vital production tool,  interconnecting all businesses to all major world markets thanks to its unique door-to-door transport services;
  5. To emphasise the role of road transport in driving economic and social development, hence prosperity and peace.

Official Farewell Ceremony

The IRU-ECO Silk Road Truck Caravan 2010 started from Islamabad (Pakistan) on 30 September 2010 after an official Caravan Farewell Ceremony.

En Route Ceremonies

The IRU-ECO Silk Road Truck Caravan 2010 will be escorted by a representative of each national road transport association in its respective country. Special welcome ceremonies will be organised in every country in the following locations:

  1. Islamabad (Pakistan)
  2. Tehran (Iran)
  3. Dushanbe (Turkmenistan)
  4. Mazar-e-Sharif (Afghanistan)
  5. Ashgabat (Tajikistan)
  6. Baku (Azerbaijan)
  7. Istanbul (Turkey)

Official Closing Ceremony

The Caravan will end in Istanbul (Turkey) on 23 October 2010 by an official Caravan Arrival Ceremony to be held with the participation of the Caravan Executive Committee.

During the ceremony, the Caravan Leader will return the Caravan Trophy given to him at the Caravan departure ceremony in Islamabad on 30 September to the ECO Secretary General, as a testimony of the caravan’s completion.