World Bank grants $38.4 mn for Silk Road tourism

March 21st, 2008 - 11:22 pm ICT by admin  

Beijing, March 21 (Xinhua) The World Bank has granted $38.4 million in loans for tourism development in northwest China’s Gansu province and conservation of the Silk Road and other cultural heritage, the bank said. The fund will be used to restore and conserve nine natural and cultural heritage sites along the Gansu section of the Silk Road.

It includes a section of the Great Wall, ancient housing, a geological park and Mount Maiji, home to numerous grottos, temples, frescos and sculptures, according to a press release from the bank.

A portion of the money will be used for training local officials and programme managers involved in the site conservation.

The 2,000-year old Silk Road originates in Xi’an, an historic city in northwest China.

It passes through south and central Asia and winds its way to the east coast of the Mediterranean Sea and on to Rome — a total length of more than 7,000 km.

It served as an important route for economic and cultural exchange between the East and the West.

Once one of the world’s main commercial arteries, the Silk Road still holds immense attraction for thousands of tourists who now chart its course in search of adventure.

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