Turkey, Turkish Cyprus will gain from water, oil ties
NICOSIA - Anatolia News Agency
Turkish Cypriot PM İrsen Küçük speaks at a ceremony on March 30 to mark the groundbreaking for the Geçitköy Damp to collect water to be send from Turkey. AA photoBoth Turkey and Turkish Cyprus stand to gain when Turkey begins piping water to the island and The Turkish Petroleum Corporation (TPAO) locates oil there, for which a survey is about to get underway, Turkish Cyprus’ Prime Minister İrsen Küçük has said, adding that “When water combines with oil, no one can stop our economy.”
Küçük said drilling equipment has begun to arrive on the island, and the oil exploration will start by the end of April as planned, speaking in an interview with the Anatolia news agency. “We expect the drilling to start promptly this month,” he said, noting that drilling teams have also arrived on the island. TPAO will carry out the drilling activities in line with a protocol signed between Turkey and Turkish Cyprus.
Turkey will also send water to Geçitköy Dam in Turkish Cyprus via underwater pipeline. The foundation for the dam has been laid.
“This is [something to celebrate with] festivity,” Küçük said, adding that 75 million cubic meters of quality water coming to Turkish Cyprus will be phenomenal. “We will exercise our rights over our soil. We have told Greek Cyprus that if there can be a solution [leading to the reunification of the island], then we should do the drilling together, explore natural resources together and share them. But the Greeks have been drilling despite our calls,” he said. “We are completely dependent on foreign sources of oil. We spend a big chunk of our budget on fuel, for needs including heating and electricity production. Finding local oil would make a significant contribution to our economy. When water combines with oil no one can stop our economy.”