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Turkey is the largest importer of fossil fuels from Russia after the EU and China: report

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Turkey imported EUR 10.7 billion worth of fossil fuels from Russia during the first six months of the war in Ukraine, ranking third after the European Union (EUR 85 billion) and China (EUR 34.9 billion), according to a report published Tuesday by Finland’s Centre for Research on Energy and Clean Air (CREA).

According to the report, Turkey’s oil imports from Russia have increased by 30 percent in the last two months compared to pre-invasion levels.

Turkey’s rising imports are noteworthy given the country’s commitment to Ukraine’s territorial integrity.

Russia earned EUR 158 billion in revenue from oil, gas, and coal exports in the first six months of the war (Feb. 24-Aug. 24), according to CREA.

The EU imported 54 percent of that, while within the EU the largest importers were Germany (EUR 19 billion), the Netherlands (EUR 11.1 billion), Italy (EUR 8.6 billion), Poland (EUR 7.4 billion), France (EUR 5.5 billion), Bulgaria (EUR 5.2 billion), Belgium (EUR 4.5 billion) and Spain (EUR 3.3 billion), according to figures from CREA.

Fossil fuel exports are estimated to have contributed EUR 43 billion to the Russian state budget and helped finance war crimes in Ukraine, according to the report from CREA. It added that Russian military spending after six months is estimated at about EUR 100 billion, while Ukraine faces costs of damaged infrastructure of more than EUR 110 billion.

Russia has drastically cut gas supplies to Europe, with the exception of Turkey, by three-quarters since the first half of 2021, violating existing contracts, CREA said, adding that Moscow is exploiting gas exports to blackmail Europe.

Turkey has not joined the Western sanctions regime against Russia and signed a new economic cooperation agreement with Moscow during a meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in Sochi last month.

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