Dear Guests,
This month I want to talk about the Silk Road. A conduit of world trade for millennia, this road was a major axis not only in the economic sense but in the development of civilization as well, a fertile ground for the meeting and merging of cultural values as well as commercial goods. From paper to silk, from the compass to porcelain, numerous products came to Europe via this route. The East, too, took glass and ivory as well as certain metals and precious stones from the West via the same route, and the interaction between the philosophies of the ancient East and the West prepared the ground for multiple innovations. Exercising control of the Silk Road, Anatolia developed century by century, becoming rich and stronger. And Istanbul, which also lay on the Silk Road, was at least four times greater in population than any city in Europe in the Ottoman period and ten times more advanced culturally.

With its unique culture and values, the Silk Road has always been in the foreground. Thousands of years ago, its seasoned merchants put forward their approach to business ethics, a lack of which is sorely felt in the world today. When the goods they were transporting in their camel caravans spoiled, honest traders did not sell them to anyone. Their principles demanded that they even dispose of stale spices! Guests were always welcome, and an effort was made to develop products and services that would surprise customers and exceed their expectations. The travel books of Ibn Battuta and Marco Polo and the caravanserais whose ruins we see today are just a few of the monuments that bring this unparalleled past bridge of culture and civilization into the present.

Today the Silk Road is coming back to life. Here at Turkish Airlines we are continuing to put ourselves in a strong position vis à vis those developments. We are assimilating not only the economic principles but also the thousands of years of civilization and cultural values of the Silk Road. We provide you with the best in catering, and we aim to enhance the pleasure of your travels by offering you quality service with a friendly smile. We offer you the comforts of home on our aircraft. We have introduced a number of innovations from  in-flight internet access to live football broadcasts. We connect 83 cities in Europe with 61 cities in Asia in the largest network on the Europe-Asia axis. We fly to 219 points around the globe, 144 of which, like the historic caravanserais, lie on the Silk Road. Our Silk Road includes all the cities of Europe and Asia. In short, like the Silk Road of old we are setting up a network that connects the world, promoting interaction between different cultures and connecting many cities not previously integrated with the world. Thanks to those initiatives, our transfer passenger market share has swelled to 66 percent in the Europe-Asia-Africa-Middle East region.

Dear Guests,
Europe is considered to be heart of the aviation industry today. But all research shows that this axis is going to shift to the East by 2023 when Istanbul will become a hub in the true sense of the word. Turkish Airlines is already positioning itself in the strongest possible way, especially on the Europe-Asia- Africa axis, thus reaping the full benefits of that development and passing them on to you.
Thank you for choosing Turkish Airlines for your travels and have a pleasant flight.

Sincerely yours,
Temel Kotil, Ph.D.
President and CEO