Ankara invites US companies to invest in Small Modular Reactors in Turkiye

Small Modular Reactors have appeared before world as important alternative in nuclear industry, Energy and Natural Resources Minister Alparslan Bayraktar tells Anadolu

Turkish Energy and Natural Resources Minister Alparslan Bayraktar said small modular reactors (SMR) have an important place in Türkiye’s long-term energy plans and called on American companies to collaborate on this technology.

“Türkiye needs more conventional large-scale power plants. On the other hand, small modular reactors have developed substantially and have appeared before the world as an important alternative in the nuclear industry.

“Regarding this, we invite companies, especially from the US, to invest and cooperate in Türkiye and to develop this technology together,” Bayraktar told Anadolu in an exclusive interview on Thursday.

His remarks came on the sidelines of the 39th American-Turkish Conference in Washington, which is a premier venue for US and Turkish business leaders to engage in commercial diplomacy.

Emphasizing that SMRs have an important place in Türkiye’s long-term energy plans,Bayraktar noted that nuclear energy is absolutely needed for the country’s energy supply security, access to clean energy, and the goal of becoming a carbon-neutral economy by 2053.

SMRs are easier to operate and construct than large-scale nuclear power plants, while their modular quality allows for faster and less expensive manufacturing.

The minister said their goal is to have a nuclear-installed capacity of 20,000 megawatts, that construction of the Akkuyu Nuclear Power Plant in Türkiye’s southern Mersin province is underway, and that they want to have it operational “as soon as possible.”

The commissioning of Türkiye’s first nuclear power plant in Akkuyu will mark a “historic milestone” further diversifying the fuel mix while reducing 35 million tons of carbon emission annually, and contributing to the country’s energy security.

LNG cooperation to contribute to both Türkiye and US

Stressing that energy and natural resources are areas that can take the economic relations between Türkiye and the US much further, Bayraktar said they developed the Energy and Climate Dialogue mechanism together with the US to bring bilateral relations in the field of energy to a “more institutional level.”

The minister said the first meeting on the mechanism was held with US Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm on Wednesday.

“This platform will not only regulate the relations of governments and ministries with each other, but we will later make it a much more comprehensive and result-oriented platform with the participation of companies from Türkiye and America,” he added.

He said the Turkish Petroleum Pipeline Corporation (BOTAS) and the US energy company ExxonMobil on Wednesday signed a deal on liquefied natural gas (LNG) trade.

“The agreement signed between BOTAS and ExxonMobil has the following feature; we had already started purchasing American LNG in Türkiye in the last few years, America had become one of our important suppliers, but the issue and project we are talking about now is actually a long-term agreement,” Bayraktar said.

Stressing that the deal could last 10-15 years, he added: “I think that this cooperation will contribute to both countries and companies and is important for our natural gas market in terms of diversification.”

Türkiye has seven international natural gas pipelines, five LNG facilities, including three floating storage and regasification units, and two underground natural gas storage facilities.

The country aims to become a key gas hub in the region, excel as an exporter, and be an effective manager of the gas it provides.

Source: aa

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