Greece-Turkey Meeting on Alternative Energy

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Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis will meet Turkish President Erdogan in Istanbul today. Turkey and Greece both have a long tradition

Greece and Turkey will hold a summit today to discuss energy issues – Photo: keeptalkinggreece.com

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis will meet Turkish President Erdogan in Istanbul today.

Turkey and Greece both have longstanding disputes over each other’s sea zones in the eastern Mediterranean, including Greek sovereignty over islands in the Aegean and the status of Cyprus. A major reason for the political disagreements between Greece and Turkey is the issue of energy security.

On Wednesday, Israeli President Isaac Herzog met Erdogan to discuss joint natural gas and oil exploration in the Mediterranean. As Russia’s war against Ukraine continues, Mediterranean countries are scrambling to secure their place as alternative energy suppliers to Europe.

With gas and oil prices soaring in the West, the US is likely to press Mediterranean countries to cooperate. In particular, Turkey is likely to ease tensions surrounding maritime oil and gas exploration and increase supplies to the West if Russia decides to cut its natural gas supplies.

Therefore, in the short to medium term, expect Greece, Turkey and Israel to reach a temporary cooperation agreement on how to handle oil and gas exploration rights vis-à-vis the so-called Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus. This deal could defuse the dispute between Greece and Turkey over their maritime exclusive economic zones, thereby increasing energy distribution to the West.

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