Our final and main objective is to consider the emergence of the Indian Ocean as the center of 21st century maritime container commerce with Sri Lanka as the hub and Africa becoming an essential vector. We will concentrate on the modern period, the macro-geographic data and situations in and around the Indian Ocean and on one particular aspect: the development of the hub-and-spoke model for the network of maritime connections in, around and beyond the Indian Ocean as for container commerce. We will insist on the hub itself, Sri Lanka, which is presently changing rapidly; on some of the various harbors around the Indian Ocean and their goods transportation inland networks, essentially railroads and highways; the projects in that field, particularly the New Silk Road of the Chinese; the bottlenecks of the Suez Canal and the Straight of Malacca; and the dead end of the Persian Gulf, except as the starting point of a hinterland network that will develop when the wars and insecurity there are stabilized. We will envisage the various routes beyond and the final destinations. We will only mention the railroad connection between Asia and Europe using the trans-Siberian railroad and beyond to Hamburg and Madrid as a competing alternative. We will also eventually show how backward in that field of container maritime commerce the USA are, backward as compared to the world and absent from the Indian Ocean and the China Seas as an actor in that container maritime commerce.We will then move to the various organizations that have direct interests in the development of this hub and spoke network of maritime connections and routes in the Indian Ocean. But this will lead to the security problem to manage the movements of the ships (to avoid flags of convenience) and the various trafficking activities that are to be contained (human trafficking; smuggling weapons, military equipment and various goods; and criminal activities of any other type) with the challenge of who can do it and how. We will then see clearly the stake attached to the re-emergence of human trafficking and slavery in this vast area. This security problem is central due to piracy and trafficking. Digitalized satellite surveillance will have to be set up for the whole Indian Ocean. What role will the USA and Europe play now the New Silk Road with the Silk Railway from China to Germany reached Spain on December 9, 2014, and the maritime Silk Road has reached Western Europe for some time already? The Chinese are taking contacts in Afghanistan to open, after the departure of the Americans, the link between Kazakhstan and Gwadar harbor, Pakistan. China Harbor Engineering Company Ltd and other Chinese companies are involved in harbor equipment and railroad development all around the Indian Ocean. Our general hypothesis is that the present evolution is the refoundation of what existed up to 1433 and the Indian Ocean is becoming again the center of the world?s maritime commerce, under the strong pioneering leadership of the Chinese so far.
About For Books THE INDIAN OCEAN FROM ADMIRAL ZHENG HE TO HUB AND SPOKE CONTAINER MARITIME