Since the outbreak of the Russo-Ukrainian War, the geopolitical importance of the Balkan region has increased significantly. The establishment of lasting peace in the Balkans is crucial to prevent the ongoing war in Ukraine from spilling further into Europe and expanding its sphere of influence.
Turkey plays a central role in ensure this permanent peace in the Balkans through its competent and successful approach to humanitarian and business diplomacy, under the determined, effective, sincere and convincing leadership of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. As Turkey strengthens its presence in the global and regional economy, it consolidates its position among the top 20 countries in the world, inspiring and leading the Balkan region.
The “Balkan Surveillance” strategy, which gained momentum in the 1980s under the late President and Prime Minister of the Republic of Turkey, Turgut Özal, remains very relevant today. Turkey’s humanitarian efforts to protect its compatriots forced to emigrate from Bulgaria and the inspiring story of Naim Süleymanoğlu, multiple world and Olympic weightlifting champion, are indicative of Turkey’s dynamic, effective, constructive and inclusive approach. Turkey’s economy, trade and political diplomacy. .
This approach takes on even greater importance today, given the need for cooperation between Balkan countries such as Bosnia and Herzegovina, North Macedonia, Serbia, Croatia, Kosovo and Albania. These countries’ relations rest on delicate balances, and Turkey’s participation can help ensure internal peace between the different identities of each nation. Furthermore, Turkey’s leading role in the Balkans is instrumental in reshaping the region’s destiny, particularly in terms of global and regional energy, agri-food, transport logistics, security of supply and network.
In the future, the global economy will face exponential risks regarding the security of agri-food and energy supplies due to global population growth. The Balkans can play a crucial role in meeting these challenges through new investment movements, fostering global and regional economic development and ensuring agricultural and food supply security, energy supply security and supply chain security. Collaborative projects in the areas of digitalization, e-services, software and hardware supply can further strengthen the region’s potential. Additionally, the Balkans can provide an important logistics network to meet the current and future needs of emerging Africa.
In this transformation process, Turkey’s leadership in joint projects plays an indispensable role in changing the discourse on the Balkans and promoting permanent peace in the region. Countries like Hungary, which share common historical ties and believe in a common future and cooperation with Turkey, can be important partners in this endeavor. It is essential to include Bulgaria and Romania in this process in order to strengthen regional cooperation and prosperity.
Through meaningful contributions and partnerships with these countries, Turkey can strengthen the global and regional role of the Balkans, fostering stability, prosperity and lasting peace in the region.
Recognizing the fundamental truth in the Balkan region, it is evident that a strong and stable Turkey holds the key to changing the “doom and gloom” of this geography. Over the past two decades, Turkey’s growing influence on global politics and economics, as well as its plans to foster positive change in the Balkans and address population decline, offer significant hope to these countries.
In addition, promote cooperation with Greece In the medium to long term, without certain obstacles in the global order, this would enable Turkey to expand its production, supply, export, investment and financing capabilities across the Balkans, ultimately reshaping the unfortunate fate of the region. Halkbank’s success in Serbia and North Macedonia is an excellent example of this positive trend.
Furthermore, increasing joint projects focusing on road, rail, maritime and air logistics will pave the way for Turkey to assume leadership in interconnecting Asia, Europe and the Africa through the Balkans. Turkey can further consolidate its position as a key player in the region by facilitating efficient transport and trade routes.
For the foreseeable future, Turkey’s commitment to permanent peace in the Balkan region will continue to grow exponentially. Building on its previous efforts and achievements, Turkey will further strengthen its contributions to the pursuit of lasting stability and prosperity in the region. Through diplomatic initiatives, economic partnerships and collaborative projects, Turkey will actively work to bridge divisions, promote dialogue and resolve conflicts. By engaging with Balkan countries and leveraging its influence, Turkey will play a central role in shaping a peaceful future for the region.