Friday, January 9, 2009

Gas Crisis to Boost Turkey's Hand with Europe

Europe's recent gas crisis lends additional support to the argument that the EU needs a strong relationship with Turkey in order to shore up its energy security. Turkey should not only strengthen its hands going into negotiations with Europe over the Nabucco pipeline, which is set to supply Europe with gas from Central Asia via pipelines laid over Turkey. For more an Nabucco, see this article from the Guardian on Wednesday.

All incoming gas from Russia into Turkey (almost 65& of its total supply) has been cut as a result of Gazprom's dispute with the Ukraine, although the Turkish government has retained the position that there will be enough gas to meet demand. There has been discussion that Turkey might broker a deal with Iran to increase the amount of gas currently being supplied by the Iranians, but the government is reluctant to consider this option.

For analysis by Saban Kardas at EDM, click here. For an excellent synopsis of Turkey's energy policy, focused primarily on its dealings with Europe in energy security matters, see Katinka Barysch's "Turkey's Role in European Energy Security," published in December 2007 by the Center for European Reform.

In related news, Turkey denied Greece's request to be supplied additional gas.


Anonymous said...

It seems Turkey's importance for EU has grown significantly. Maybe it's the chance to finally start seriously thinking about Turkey as a new member?

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