During their four-hour meeting, Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan agreed to expand economic relations between their two countries. During Erdogan’s visit to the southern Russian tourist metropolis of Sochi, “very important decisions” were made in the area of trade and the economy, said Russia’s Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Nowak, according to the TASS agency.
Turkey pays for Russian gas in rubles
For example, the conditions for cooperation are to be made easier for Russian and Turkish companies. Turkey’s Akkuyu nuclear power plant, which is being built by a Russian state-owned company, was also discussed at the meeting, Nowak said. In addition, both sides had agreed that Turkey would in future pay for Russian gas in rubles.
Russian President Vladimir Putin (right) welcomes Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan
In addition, the two presidents assured each other that they would act in concert and solidarity in the fight against “all terrorist organizations in Syria”. Against the resistance of Russia, Turkey had occupied areas in northern Syria with military operations against Kurdish militias.
Putin wants Western sanctions lifted
Putin and Erdogan also confirmed their willingness to implement a recently concluded agreement on the export of Ukrainian grain. The need to “ensure full implementation of the package agreement” was stressed, Russian agencies quoted from a joint statement by the two heads of state.
Kremlin chief Putin demands compensation for the release of grain exports from Ukraine
Two weeks ago, with Turkish mediation, among others, Moscow and Kyiv agreed on an agreement to release grain exports, which had been blocked in Ukraine for months because of Russia’s war of aggression. However, Russia has always emphasized that in return it expects a lifting of Western sanctions that indirectly affect its own grain, food and fertilizer exports. That is what is meant when Moscow insists on the so-called package character of the agreement.
Combat drones were not discussed
What was eagerly awaited was whether Putin and Erdogan would talk about a possible acquisition of Turkish combat drones by Russia. In the course of its war against Ukraine, Moscow recently expressed interest in the Bayraktar TB2 weapons. In the evening, however, journalists from the state news agency Ria Nowosti said that the two presidents had not addressed the issue.
nob/gri (rtr, afp, dpa)