The 2 leaders each pressed a button on their office desks in Moscow and Ankara in a video ceremony unveiling the new phase of the Akkuyu project.
The power plant is being built by Russian Rosatom under an intergovernmental agreement signed in 2010.
In all, the power plant will have 4 units with a total capacity of 4,800 MW.
Putin praised the joint efforts that made it possible to continue the construction of the plant despite the coronavirus pandemic:
- I would like to express satisfaction with the combined efforts of the Russian and Turkish professionals – nuclear experts, engineers and workers – which ensured the construction of the NPP in accordance with the agreed schedule.
- I clearly remember how Mr Erdogan and I took part in the ceremony to launch the construction of the 1st unit in April 2018
- I´m confident that the successful implementation of this truly flagship project will not just advance our energy cooperation to a fundamentally new level but will also facilitate the further development of the multifaceted Russian-Turkish partnership
- The Akkuyu NPP is the largest nuclear construction site in the world
- 3 power units are being built simultaneously now
- This is the world’s only NPP built under the Build-Own-Operate concept.
- Over 400 Turkish companies are involved in the project
- The value of the orders received by Turkish suppliers has already exceeded $2 billion
Turkish President hopes to put the plant online by the time Turkey celebrates its 100th anniversary of the establishment of the Republic in 2023.
Speaking at the event, Erdogan noted:
- We will be placing Turkey in the league of countries with nuclear energy by 2023, the 100th anniversary of the founding of our Republic
- The decision to include nuclear power in the national energy infrastructure is a strategic step toward energy supply security
- The close dialogue that we established with my esteemed friend (Putin) is playing a key role not only in bilateral relations but also in preserving regional peace and stability
The capacity of each nuclear power unit will be 1,200 MW.
To date, the project is fully funded by the Russian side.
The total amount of investment in the plant has been calculated as $20 billion.
Turkish Energy and Natural Resources Minister Fatih Dönmez commented:
- Construction and commissioning of the plant will provide 10% of Turkey's electricity needs
- It is also important contribution to the preservation of our ecology: NPPs are a source of environmentally friendly and uninterrupted electricity
The plant, which will have an estimated service life of 60 years with an extension of another 20 years, will produce carbon-free energy around the clock.
To read the full story in Russian.