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Kremlin Pitstop

Financing Putin's War

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In 2023, Turkey became the world’s biggest buyer of Russian oil products and imported 18% of Russia's total exports of oil products. In effect, Turkey has been one of the biggest hubs for reexporting Russian fuel products to the EU. Since the start of the EU/G7 ban on 5 February 2023 until the end of February 2024, Turkey has imported EUR 17.6 billion of Russian oil products, which have generated EUR 5.4 billion in tax revenues for the Kremlin war chest, prolonging and enabling Moscow’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine. This analysis shows how Russia has exploited a complex web of economic influence globally to circumvent sanctions and maintain its position in international markets. Turkey has become one of the key enablers of this Kremlin Playbook.


POLITICO: How Turkey became Putin’s ‘pit stop’ for selling camouflaged fuel to the EU

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