Talks between Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Russian President Vladimir Putin ended with the leaders announcing their intention to mend ties between Moscow and Ankara.
The first meeting between the two leaders focused on fixing economic relations between the two countries which had reached a historical peak before the Russian jet crisis last November.
Speaking to press after the meeting, both leaders said they agreed on restoring and improving economic relations.
— Turkish Presidency (@trpresidency) 9 August 2016
Erdoğan said a Turkish-Russian partnership is very important not only for economical relations, but also regional and global stability.
He said they agreed on restoring relations gradually.
“We agreed that a Turkish-Russian joint investment fund be established. We will also increase our cooperation in the defence industry."
He said all projects which were halted after the jet crisis will restart as soon as possible.
Halted joint projects include the construction of the Turkish Stream gas pipeline and the Akkuyu Nuclear Plant.
Erdoğan says they aim to reach a trade volume of $100 billion over the next few years.
The trade volume between Turkey and Russia currently stands on $28 billion, which dropped from $35 billion after the jet crisis.
Putin thanked Erdoğan for visiting Russia despite "a very difficult situation regarding the failed coup attempt."
— Vladimir Putin (@PutinRF_Eng) 9 August 2016
He says Erdoğan’s visit shows that he wants to restart dialogue and restore relations with Russia.
Putin also reminded media that he was one of the first leaders to call Erdoğan following the coup attempt on July 15.
He said he will phase out all sanctions against Turkey gradually, but the priority is to bring bilateral ties between the two countries back to its peak.
Author: Tuncay Şahin