Turkey asks Russia for bigger reduction in gas prices

Turkey asks Russia for bigger reduction in gas prices

Turkey asks Russia for bigger reduction in gas prices

Russian President Vladimir Putin listens to a question as he speaks to the media during a joint news conference with his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdoğan at the new Presidential Palace in Ankara, Dec. 1. AFP Photo

Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu has said the 6 percent reduction in the price of natural gas pledged by Russia is not sufficient, revealing that the relevant parties have directly approached Russian President Vladimir Putin to increase the reduction.

“No one could envisage that Turkey and Russia could make such progress in relations in such a short time span. Our trade volume has increased to $32 billion and during yesterday’s meetings we made constructive decisions for the future. As you know, the decision to decrease the gas prices by 6 percent was announced by Putin. But after the press conference we told him this reduction is not sufficient. Talks will continue,” Davutoğlu said during his parliamentary group meeting on Dec. 2.

Turkish officials have not announced the exact amount of reduction they seek, but according to Russian officials Turkey expects a 15 percent reduction in gas prices. Turkey is Russia’s second largest natural gas market.

Before Davutoğlu spoke on Dec. 2, Energy Minister Taner Yıldız said talks on the natural gas prices will continue between the two countries’ state companies and energy ministries aiming to reach a final compromise on the issue. Russia and Turkey have already agreed to increase Russia’s volume of natural gas up to 3 billion cubic meters starting from Jan. 1, 2015.

Recalling that Turkey had resumed the term presidency of the G-20 for one year, Davutoğlu said this was a clear indication of Turkey’s growing weight in world politics.

“This is no longer a country that waits with concern on what decisions big countries will make about its fate; this is a big country that can convene big countries to decide on global issues,” Davutoğlu said. “Turkey’s G-20 leadership will bring about new horizons to our foreign policy.”