By the Blouin News World staff

Russia moves to block Turkey’s energy security

by in Middle East.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Turkey's president. (Source: Brookings Institution/flickr)

Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Turkey’s president. (Source: Brookings Institution/flickr)

Turkey is having a rough time. Apart from domestic political turmoil, renewed fighting with Kurdish secessionists, antagonism with Russia, and the very real possibility that the refugee deal with the E.U. will fall apart, now its future energy prospects are in limbo. After Turkish forces shot down a Russian jet on the Syrian border last November, furious Moscow became Ankara’s enemy. Russia turned the economic screws hard by imposing sanctions and canceling visa-free tourism. Looking to diversify its energy imports, Turkey has been in talks with Israel over buying natural gas, to start in 2020. But on Tuesday Israeli media reported that Israel and Russia are about to agree upon a modus operandi in the Eastern Mediterranean about weapons and natural gas deals.

Throughout the diplomatic turmoil, Russia has remained Turkey’s largest gas supplier with a market share of over 60%. But Russian energy giant Gazprom’s natural gas exports to Turkey during the first quarter of 2016 were down to 6.4 billion cubic meters, an 18% decline compared to the same period last year. This overreliance on…

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