Russia and Turkey have a raft of strategic and commercial trade deals in place which could be at risk as the diplomatic row over Turkey’s downing of a Russian warplane continues.
Geopolitical tensions between Russia and NATO member Turkey have risen this week after a Russian SU-24 warplane was shot down by a Turkish F-16 fighter jet on Tuesday. Turkey said the jet was in Turkish airspace and ignored warnings to leave, Russia denies this.
Since the incident a war of words has broken out between the two countries over who was at fault and Russia has threatened to retaliate on an economic level.
On Wednesday, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said Turkey’s actions could result in the scrapping of joint projects and that Turkish companies could lose Russian market share.
On Thursday, Medvedev appeared to harden his stance against Turkey, ordering the government to draw up measures which could include freezing some joint investment projects with Turkey, Reuters reported. These could also include restrictions on food imports, he said.
Erdogan responded by saying such talk was “emotional” and “unfitting for politicians,” Reuters reported. He added that he was saddened by such statements from Russia.
This could be significant for both countries, Turkey is Russia’s second most important trading partner after Germany and, if Russia goes ahead and cuts economic ties, both countries will feel the effects, analysts warn.