Turkish minister says Russia’s sanctions hurt both countries

Turkey's Customs, Trade Minister Bulent Tufenkci says Russian sanctions on some Turkish products are hurting both countries

Photo by: AA
Photo by: AA

Turkey‘s Customs and Trade Minister Bulent Tufenkci

Sanctions imposed by Russia on some Turkish products hurt both countries, Customs and Trade Minister Bulent Tufenkci said on Monday.

Russia imposed sanctions on some Turkish products and services after Turkish armed forces shot down a Russian fighter that had violated Turkish airspace after repeated warnings on November 24.

“These sanctions harm the people of  both countries, Turkish and Russian,” Tufenkci said. “I hope this strain will not last for a long time.”

Noting there was a decline in bilateral trade volume between two countries even before the jet crisis due to recession in Russia, Tufenkci said that the effects of Russian sanctions on Turkey would be limited.

“When we look at our trade with Russia, there was a decline of 38-40 percent in 2015 compared with 2014. We have experienced regular decreases in our exports to Russia this year.” Tufenkci said.

“In the period after the crisis in relations beginning on November 24 to the end of December, there was an additional 38 percent decline. With the multiplier effect, the real decline is around 11-11.8 percent. Looking at the size of our economy, we believe this decline will not affect us to very large extent.”

Tufenkci said that he sees no immediate risk in near term for Turkish gas imports from Russia thanks to international agreements. About 60 percent of Turkish gas imports come from Russia.