The 2021 Silk Road Week started Friday in Hangzhou, capital of east China’s Zhejiang Province, as part of efforts to showcase the cultural heritage of the ancient trade route.

Exhibitions, Seminars, Lectures and various other activities will be held between Friday and June 24, around the theme “The Silk Road: Cultural Diversity & Sustainable Development.”

A report was released at the event’s opening ceremony to introduce last year’s major events on the Silk Road, including archaeological discoveries, exhibitions, academic publications, and cultural events.

A Silk Road-themed online museum was also launched on Friday to showcase thousands of cultural relics collected by organizations from 18 countries along the ancient road.

To strengthen the protection of relevant cultural heritage, the International Association for the Study of Silk Road Textiles and the Chinese Museums Association’s Committee of Museums along the Silk Road decided in 2019 to hold a Silk Road Week around June 22 every year.

The decision was made to mark the anniversary of the Chang’an-Tian-shan Silk Road Corridor becoming a UNESCO World Heritage site on June 22, 2014.