Turkey can realize renewable energy target by changing investment model: Company

Turkey can realize renewable energy target by changing investment model: Company

Merve Erdil - ISTANBUL
Turkey can realize renewable energy target by changing investment model: Company A leading businessman from the energy sector has said Turkey could reach its target of 20,000 megawatts (MW) of installed wind power capacity by 2023 by revising its existing investment and licensing model. 

“Our company has invested in wind energy from the very beginning. Turkey aims to increase its installed wind power capacity to 20,000 MW by 2023. There are eight years left, but the country’s current capacity [is currently] 4,700 MW. We do not believe that the existing competition model is good for raising the capacity. Turkey cannot reach its 2023 target through such small facilities with capacities of approximately 10-20 MW. Much higher prequalification limits must be designated and real investors must be supported to offer licenses for higher installed capacities. The aim of the state should reach the targeted 20,000 MW of wind power in a bid to reduce its natural gas bill by around $3 billion annually. If the state offers around 40-50 years of license to wind power facilities, it can save around $150 billion,” said Polat Holding Chairman Adnan Polat in an exclusive interview with daily Hürriyet. 

Polat noted that the licenses have been granted for over 10,000 MW of wind power by now, but almost half of this capacity has been realized. 

“Turkey can reach its 2023 target by changing its licensing model. Turkey started to invest in renewable energy at the same time with Germany. Both countries’ renewable energy power was almost zero. Germany has now attained over 40,000 MW of solar power, although its solar capacity is almost half of Turkey’s capacity. In Turkey, the unlicensed figure is just around 500 MW. Germany also has around 40,000 MW installed wind power. The first investment costs may be higher in renewable energy, but we are talking about the facilities that will generate power at least 50 years. There are also many oil producing countries that also invest in solar energy. Since we first entered this sector some 20 years ago, we have always said the same thing: Turkey needs to focus on local energy resources,” he added. 

According to Polat, the more the renewable energy sector grows, the higher the investment will grow on renewable energy machinery technologies. 

“There are now factories which produce wind wing and wind tower technologies in Turkey. Most importantly, there are companies which prepare to establish turbine generators. They will make the investment as soon as the investment climate is ready, including us. When these investments are made, there will be opportunity to technology transfer and exports in addition to increasing employment. The wing factory, established by a German company, in the Aegean province of İzmir now make exports to Japan, Germany, Canada and the U.S. The company exports more than 80 percent of its products as these products are not used in Turkey now,” he said. 

Polat also noted that the state should extend the support period for the existing licensees’ 10-year purchasing guarantee by around five years in order to overcome their losses from the oil plunge.