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Turkey sees nuclear tender launched within 10 days

Turkey will launch a tender to build a nuclear power plant within 10 days, an Energy Ministry official told Reuters on Wednesday.

The energy minister said in November Turkey planned to advertise a tender for the construction of the nuclear power plant on Feb. 21. The official, who declined to be identified, spoke after the ministry received official opinion on the subject from the country’s audit office. “The audit office’s opinion on the nuclear power plant regulations has arrived. There was no objection to any of the essential elements of the draft,” the official said. “With the cabinet’s approval of the regulations there is no obstacle to launching the tender,” he said, adding he expected it to be issued within 10 days. The project is one of several ways in which the government is looking to boost the country’s energy production to keep pace with rapidly growing demand against a background of strong economic growth.

The government has identified Sinop on the Black Sea as a possible site for a nuclear plant. But as license work on that has not been completed, the site of Akkuyu at Mersin on the Mediterranean, which already has a license, could be chosen if the private sector expresses a preference for it. Turkey has conducted work on building three nuclear power plants with a total capacity of 5,000MW (megawatts). Among companies which have shown an interest in building a nuclear power plant in Turkey are local conglomerates Sabanci Holding and Koc Holding.

Energy-to-construction company Enka Insaat said in January it had agreed with Korea Electric Power Corp. (KEPCO) to work together on nuclear energy in Turkey. Zorlu Enerji has said it was in talks with several large firms on building a nuclear power plant in Turkey. (Reuters)