Türkiye to speed up energy investments, increase efficiency – Energy Minister

Habertürk - The Turkish government is working on adding new power generation assets to meet growing energy demand, according to Minister of Energy and Natural Resources Berat Albayrak. Having completed an official visit to China, Albayrak, accompanied by the President of the Investment Support and Promotion Agency of Türkiye (ISPAT) and the President of the Privatization Administration (OIB) Mehmet Bostan, spoke to the Turkish press about new plans to increase the country’s appeal for international investors.

The minister said that the country needed much more capacity to feed its growing economy adding that the private sector accounted for the majority of Türkiye’s 73 GW installed capacity. “We need to expand our installed capacity by at least another 50 GW over the next decade. This means that an investment total of USD 100 billion is required,” he said.

During his four-day visit, Albayrak held talks with the leading Chinese energy companies, exploring cooperation opportunities in a number of areas including renewables, coal-fired thermal power plants and nuclear energy.

“After talks with our Chinese counterparts on Türkiye’s near-term energy goals, we found China’s expertise in the energy industry of interest, especially in coal-fired thermal power plants. Türkiye has large coal fields but the coal has low calorific value,” Albayrak said, stating that today’s technologies allowed electricity generation from such resources.

“Preperations for a new model of developing Türkiye’s coal fields and coal-derived electricity generation is in the works,” he said, adding that speed and efficiency were the priorities in the new model that could be in effect as early as this year. Albayrak said that despite the geopolitically risky environment, investor interest in Türkiye was high.

Türkiye’s Energy Minister also visited a nuclear power plant during his visit to China, holding talks with the executives the State Nuclear Power Technology Corporation (SNPTC), the leading company in China’s nuclear energy industry. Türkiye has two nuclear power plant projects, one under construction, in Akkuyu, Mersin, and one projected in Sinop. The country is planning to add a third nuclear power plant to its power portfolio. China had previously expressed interest in the project.

Türkiye is heavily dependent on imported natural gas and is taking steps towards promoting the use of domestic resources, both fossil fuels and renewables, for power generation. The government has taken steps to bring the country’s coal reserves to the attention of foreign energy companies via changes to its investment incentives, making use of locally sourced fossil fuels to fire thermal power plants more attractive.

Türkiye also has a lucrative feed-in tariff and investment incentives that cover energy generation from renewable resources.

The country’s installed capacity is expected to reach at least 120 GW by 2023, the centennial of the Republic.

Photograph of Berat Albayrak Shaking Hands with a Chinese Investor