16.01.2017_No11 / News in Brief

Russia Has Resumed Preparations For Turkey Nuclear Plant Construction, Says Rosatom

Policies & Politics

16 Jan (NucNet): Russia has resumed preparations for construction of Turkey’s first nuclear power plant at Akkuyu near Mersin on the country’s southern Mediterranean coast, Alexei Likhachev, director-general of state nuclear corporation Rosatom said. In an interview with the state-owned Russia 24 news channel, Mr Likhachev said commercial operation of Akkuyu-1 is scheduled for 2023. He said relations between Russia and Turkey had been “seriously complicated” in November 2015 when a Turkish fighter jet shot down a Russian Su-24 warplane over Syria. In June 2016 Turkey’s president Recep Tayyip Erdogan gave the Russian government a letter of apology for the incident and in July 2016 spoke by telephone with Russian president Vladimir Putin, who approved the normalisation of trade and economic relations with Turkey, Mr Likhachev said. Russia has signed a contract to supply four VVER-1200 units for the facility. Turkey does not have any commercial nuclear reactors, but has confirmed it is planning to build two stations – Akkuyu and Sinop – with four units each. Mr Erdogan has been quoted in local media as saying he wants to see a third nuclear station. Turkey has signed an agreement with Japan for the construction the second station, Sinop. According to a recent International Energy Agency report preparations are advanced at Akkuyu and construction will begin this year, although Turkey has not confirmed this. The IEA said feasibility studies are continuing at Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and Itochu Corporation for the construction of the Sinop station, with four Generation-III Atmea-1 PWRs.

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David Dalton

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