Updated: 05/02/2013 20:14 | By Agence France-Presse

Japanese-French led group to build Turkish nuclear plant

A Japanese-French consortium has won a $22 billion dollar contract to build a nuclear power plant on Turkey's Black Sea coast, a senior energy ministry official said on Thursday.


Japanese-French led group to build Turkish nuclear plant

Turkey signed a deal with Russia in 2010 to build the country's first power plant at Akkuyu. A Japanese-French consortium has won a $22 billion dollar contract to build a nuclear power plant on Turkey's Black Sea coast, a senior energy ministry official told AFP on condition of anonymity.

"An inter-governmental agreement is expected to be signed between the prime ministers of both countries on Friday," the official told AFP on condition of anonymity.

In an interview published Thursday in Japan's Nikkei business daily, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who is to host Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe on Friday, said that Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and the French group Areva would lead the consortium chosen to build the nuclear plant.

The Nikkei report said that Turkey had faith in the technological prowess of Japan's nuclear industry and believed it had learned from the tsunami-triggered nuclear disaster at Fukushima in 2011.

"Erdogan said Japan has experience and know-how in coping with earthquakes. He also said that Japan has learned from the Fukushima Daiichi disaster," the paper said. Like Japan, Turkey lies in an earthquake-prone region of the world.

The Sinop plant could lead to more nuclear reactor construction in Turkey for Japanese firms, the prime minister added.

"Turkey would welcome a Japanese bid on a proposed third plant and is working to select a site," Erdogan said according to an English-language version of the report.

"The country wants to have as many reactors as possible in operation by 2023," he added.

The Sinop plant will comprise four reactors with combined output of 4,800 megawatts, according to the unnamed energy ministry official, who did not say when the generator was expected to be completed.

Japanese, Chinese, South Korean and Canadian nuclear power groups had competed for the project, and the deal marks Japan's first successful public-private bid for an overseas nuclear plant project since the nuclear disaster in Fukushima.

Turkey, which relies heavily on gas and oil imports from Russia and Iran, wants to build a total of three nuclear power plants to reduce its dependence on foreign energy supplies.

In 2010, Ankara struck a deal with Russia to build the country's first power plant at Akkuyu, in southern Turkey.

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