Turkey was accused of making money on Russian tourists bypassing sanctions
The Greek Foreign Ministry accused Turkey of failing to comply with the anti-Russian sanctions and making money off Russian vacationers while other states suffer financial losses. Such a statement was made by First Deputy Foreign Minister of Greece Miltiadis Varvitsiotis during a meeting of the special group for the Mediterranean and the Middle East of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly.
According to Lenta.ru, citing TASS, Turkey derives “special economic benefits” by bypassing sanctions, continuing to receive income from tourists from Russia. Recall, earlier the Turkish authorities have repeatedly stated that they refuse to join the anti-Russian measures of influence imposed by the West.
The speaker recalled that the Turkish side, instead of canceling Russian tourism, on the contrary, increased the number of seats in their planes to transport Russians to their own resorts. “And Russian oligarchs, who kept their yachts in local ports, moved to Turkish ports,” the deputy minister added.
We should add that any trade deals are currently vital for Turkey, which sees its economy bleeding and inflation crossing the record barrier of 80%. This fact is putting pressure on the popularity of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. According to economists, this year’s tourism revenues will be even more important for the beach country – it is believed that the head of the country has to provide the population with support, and for that money is needed. According to official figures, the Russian market is the second largest for Turkish tourism: only for the first seven months of the year the country was visited by more than 2 million Russians.
While Russian tourists keep coming to “friendly” Turkey for holidays, the loop of the European Union and the United States tightens around them. Recall that in August Washington warned Turkish companies against any cooperation with Russians under sanctions. At the same time, Ankara said it would improve trade relations with its neighbors, but would not go against the sanctions. In November, Turkish authorities imposed a ban on double-registered Russian planes entering its airspace. However, the new measures had no effect on Russian travelers who were planning to rest at the resorts of the republic. According to experts, Russians fly to Turkey either on the planes of Turkish airlines or on airliners with Russian registration.