Study to locate 3rd nuke plant to begin
Energy Minister Taner Yıldız says Turkey has already lost much time in picking a partner to build a nucelar power in the Black Sea province of Sinop.The company that wins the contest for Turkey’s second planned nuclear plant will also conduct a study on the location of a third one, Energy Minister Taner Yıldız said. South Korea, one of the bidders along with Japan, Canada and China, is lagging behind, he also said during a meeting with journalists in Ankara.
Picking a location for a nuclear plant requires a 1.5 or two years of study, Yıldız said, adding that the country has already lost time choosing the partner to build its second plant in the Black Sea region of Sinop.
“Such a study will be conducted at least in four or five locations,” he said, naming İğneada, a seaside town close to the Bulgarian border, while answering questions.
However, the firm to undertake the study would not necessarily be the operator of the facility, he added.
Speaking about the South Korean bid, he said, “Their current offer is not very appropriate if they do not come up with a totally new offer.”
Russia’s Rosatom is building Turkey’s first nuclear plant in the Mediterranean province of Mersin.
Turkey expects the U.S. to extend its waiver on Turkey’s crude oil imports from Iran, as the Turkish oil refiner Tüpraş has continued to import crude oil from Iran, the minister said.
“We think that [the U.S.] will revive the second extension of six months, which also includes Turkey, and extend it,” he said.
European countries bought 3-5 percent of their oil imports from Iran, but Turkey met almost half of its needs from this country last year, the minister said.
“Therefore Iran is a crucial import point for us,” Yıldız noted. Following the U.S. and EU sanctions on Iran, Turkey has made up for declining crude imports from Iran through purchases from countries such as Libya, Saudi Arabia and Russia, he added.
Turkey will continue purchasing natural gas from neighboring Iran even as Western countries increase sanctions on Iran due to its disputed nuclear program, the minister also said.
“It is out of the question for us to take a step backward,” Yıldız said, adding that Turkey had not been asked to take such a step.
Iran is Turkey’s second-biggest natural gas supplier after Russia, and the minister said Tehran supplied 18-20 percent of the gas that Turkey consumes.
On Nov. 30 the U.S. Senate unanimously approved new economic sanctions aimed at further crippling Iran’s energy, shipping and port sectors a year after Congress passed tough restrictions against Tehran. On Dec. 7 the United States extended exemptions from sanctions designed to choke Iran’s oil exports to nine major economic powers, including Turkey, China, Taiwan, India and South Korea.