The relationship between Ukraine and Turkey has seen significant developments in recent years. The two countries have established strong economic ties, increased diplomatic cooperation, and have become increasingly important strategic partners in the Black Sea region. In this essay, we will examine the current state of relations between Ukraine and Turkey and explore the factors that have contributed to their growing relationship.
The Ukraine-Turkey relationship has a long history dating back to the Ottoman Empire. However, it was only after the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991 that the two countries began to establish diplomatic relations. Since then, the relationship between the two countries has grown significantly, particularly in the economic sphere. In 2020, the bilateral trade between Ukraine and Turkey reached a record high of $5.5 billion, with both countries committing to further expanding their economic ties.
One of the key factors driving this economic cooperation is Turkey’s interest in Ukraine’s agricultural sector. Ukraine is one of the world’s largest producers of agricultural goods, including wheat, corn, and sunflower oil. Turkey, as a major importer of these products, has been actively investing in Ukraine’s agricultural infrastructure, including building grain terminals and processing facilities. In addition, Turkey has become a significant source of investment for Ukraine’s renewable energy sector, particularly in wind and solar power.
In addition to economic cooperation, Ukraine and Turkey have also developed closer diplomatic ties. In 2021, Turkey was one of the first countries to recognize Ukraine’s sovereignty over Crimea, which was annexed by Russia in 2014. Turkey has also been an active participant in the diplomatic efforts to resolve the ongoing conflict in eastern Ukraine. In particular, Turkey has been a vocal supporter of Ukraine’s territorial integrity and has expressed its support for a diplomatic solution to the conflict.
The military relationship between Ukraine and Turkey has also been growing. In 2019, the two countries signed a military cooperation agreement, which included joint military exercises and the exchange of military personnel. This cooperation has become particularly important given the ongoing conflict in eastern Ukraine and the increased military presence of Russia in the Black Sea region.
Finally, Ukraine and Turkey have also developed cultural ties. In recent years, Ukraine has become an increasingly popular tourist destination for Turkish citizens, with many Turkish visitors interested in the country’s history and culture. In addition, Ukrainian culture, including its cuisine and music, has become more popular in Turkey, with several Ukrainian cultural festivals taking place in Turkish cities.
In conclusion, the relationship between Ukraine and Turkey has developed significantly in recent years, particularly in the economic and diplomatic spheres. The two countries have become important strategic partners in the Black Sea region, with growing military cooperation and shared interests in the region’s stability. While challenges remain, particularly in the ongoing conflict in eastern Ukraine, the relationship between Ukraine and Turkey is expected to continue to grow in the coming years.