ANKARA, November 22. /ITAR-TASS/. Turkey pays much attention to the visit of Prime Minister to Russia on November 21-22, Recep Tayyip Erdogan said in an exclusive interview with Itar-Tass deputy CEO Mikhail Gusman.
Previous meetings of the cooperation council between Russia and Turkey have resulted in major practical initiatives, Erdogan said.
“A major breakthrough is seen in the sphere of energy; great progress is achieved in the sphere of tourism,” he said. “The trade volume between our countries has reached $35 billion, and we shall apply every effort to bring it to the level of $100 billion.”
“I hope that friendly relations with Vladimir Putin will have positive development, so that the dialogue results in even more important joint steps,” the prime minister said. He expressed confidence “development of a dialogue between Russia and Turkey, two neighboring countries, which have a rich history of relations, will be a good example for future generations.”
“As for the visa regime between our countries, there are no problems here,” the prime minister continued as saying. “Surely, this improves our cooperation. The number of trips made by our citizens has been growing. Nowadays, about four million tourists from Russia come to visit Turkey.”
Speaking about the issues of bilateral cooperation in the energy sector, Erdogan said “supplies from Russia cover 56% of Turkey’s demand in natural gas.” The prime minister added Ankara suggested developing new directions of cooperation in the energy sector, including nuclear energy. “In this sphere,” he said, “we have made a breakthrough —we have been constructing a nuclear power plant at the Accueil site jointly with Russia. The construction is underway; the project has been active for three years now.” “We pay great attention to it, and the very fact we have made our first step in this sphere jointly with Russia speaks for itself”.