22.Nov .2022 13:30

Türkiye in talks with Russia for building 2nd nuclear plant

Türkiye in talks with Russia for building 2nd nuclear plant
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Türkiye has started negotiations with Russia’s state-owned atomic energy agency Rosatom for the construction of the nation's second nuclear power plant in the Turkish northern province of Sinop, Deputy Energy and Natural Resources Minister Alparslan Bayraktar said Monday.

Türkiye has prioritized energy security as a result of the energy crisis, putting nuclear power at the forefront of its energy plans.

Bayraktar's remarks came at the Atomexpo 2022 international nuclear energy event in Russia's coastal city of Sochi.

To achieve the goal of becoming carbon neutral by the turn of the century, Türkiye has laid out extensive energy plans over the next 30 years, with nuclear power central to this goal, according to Bayraktar.

"We need at least 16 to 20 reactors, according to our initial estimates, or we need 12 to 16 reactors in addition to the Akkuyu Nuclear Power Plant to be a carbon-neutral economy by the turn of the century," he said.

Negotiations for the construction of the second nuclear plant in Sinop began with Japan, but Türkiye is now set to restart talks with Rosatom, building on the experience gained during the development of the first plant, Akkuyu, to ensure competitiveness in this sector.

Bayraktar disclosed that Türkiye is also in talks with South Korean and U.S. companies for nuclear energy development, while negotiations are ongoing with the Chinese government for the third power plant.

Alexey Likhachev, the general manager of Rosatom, cited the escalating political unrest around the world and its detrimental effects on the energy industry which has seen skyrocketing natural gas prices that once traded at $200 per thousand cubic meters (tcm) to the current $4,000 per tcm as the pivot towards nuclear energy.

According to Likhachev, many European countries, particularly France and Germany, have begun to reconsider the power resource as the trend toward nuclear energy has grown in recent years.

With nuclear energy on the verge of a transformation, Likhachev said Russia is prioritizing Türkiye, Bangladesh, Hungary, Egypt and African countries for the construction of nuclear power plants.

The Sinop nuclear power plant will be the country's second nuclear project, following the country’s first nuclear plant, the under-construction Akkuyu project.

An agreement for the Akkuyu plant was signed in 2010, and next year the first reactor is scheduled to come online, Daily Sabah reports.