Russo-Turkish Akkuyu nuclear deal agreed

During the meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on 10 March, the two sides agreed on a Rosatom-led construction of Turkey’s first nuclear plant, Akkuyu. With negotiations initiated in 2014, Putin described the venture as a “strategic investment,” valued around US$20bn.

Further thawing relations, Putin revealed Akkuyu embodies a longstanding “peaceful” Russo-Turkish cooperation. Rosatom’s First Deputy CEO for Corporate Development and International Business, Kirill Komarov, remarked on 9 March that the partnership would determine Russo-Turkish energy collaboration for “the next century”. Intended to satiate burgeoning Turkish consumption, Akkuyu will feature four VVER reactors – analogous to Hungary’s Paks – each stand with a generational capacity of 1,200MW, and a planned annual output of 35bn kWh.

With Akkuyu’s composition due to commence in 2018, the Russo-Turkish TurkStream gas pipeline was also settled, anticipated to supplement the South Caucasus Pipeline. An alternative to cater southern Europe, TurkStream circumvents Ukraine via an underwater passage. Athens and Moscow signed a deal in 2015, fortifying Greek energy security, whilst Ankara conclusively consolidated the removal of its reliance on Ukraine-transited gas.

About author: Elisabeth Gheorghe

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