Silk Road trade route reaches Galesburg

May 18, 2012 09:46 AM
The Entrepreneur, Business and Industry (EBI) Network’s Global Strategies Director, Gary Camarano, met this week with several trade delegations and representatives from Central Asian countries, which were once part of the historic Silk Road trade route. The Silk Road trade route changed the world during the late middle ages, and many will argue it set the foundation for what became the modern world. Today, trade between East and West is one of the world’s most important topics, and the ‘Old Silk Road’ trade route is again becoming an important link between East and West trading partners.
Camarano attended the Silk Route Conference 2012, in Chicago, an annual meeting between Central Asian countries and Midwest based private and public organizations and said, "The purpose of the conference is to open dialogues between potential trading partners. To discuss the challenges Central Asia faces and the opportunities it presents. US, and specifically Midwest based businesses can establish contacts with what can be very lucrative markets and partners." Camarano further explained that the Central Asian region "holds a vast amount of natural resources – oil, coal, minerals – and is a very viable market for mobile machinery, an industry cluster Galesburg/West Central Illinois is right in the middle of." In addition to machinery the agricultural prowess of our region is something in which potential Central Asian countries are interested.
Joining Camarano was Galesburg entrepreneur Tom Maleck, of Cross Fire Soil Remediation. Maleck attended with the goal of establishing contact with oil producing partners who may need his services to clean petroleum contaminated soil. Maleck stated, "If you are involved in oil production, you are going to have soil contamination. If you are concerned about the environment, a service like ours will make sense, and many of these countries are proud of their pristine surroundings and want to preserve them. This is a great opportunity for me to establish and expand contacts in a region that has expressed interest in doing business with Cross Fire. I was happy to meet with the representatives from Turkey and Azerbaijan to discuss how my services could solve problems with soil contamination. Hopefully this exposure will lead to a contract in the months to come."
Over a course of two days Camarano learned about of the challenges, opportunities and the business culture of the region, and will be developing a plan for introducing West Central region businesses to eager partners from the Silk Road. Pulod Amirbekow, Director of Promotion, Tajikistan stressed, "There is a market and opportunity, but you have to learn the business culture and establish relationships first before you can do business on the Silk Road. This conference is the first step in that process."
State Representative Don Moffitt said, "As a strong supporter of the EBI Network I commend their assertive economic development efforts, and I am happy to see them looking for export opportunities and providing assistance for our export ready businesses. I strongly encourage our businesses to reach out to the EBI Network and look for ways to collaborate on ‘going Global.’ Exporting is one way our region can grow and prosper."
The EBI Network will be hosting a "Global Competitiveness" summit in the fall, and area businesses and economic developers are encouraged to attend. For further information about the summit and other programs to help West Central Illinois businesses, contact Gary Camarano at 309/371-0473.


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