Moscow and Ankara start Akkuyu NPP project
Russia and Turkey have started the creation of a consortium for the construction of the first Turkish nuclear power plant project Akkuyu.
Akkuyu NPP project includes four power units with Russian VVER-1200 3+ generation reactors.
Akkuyu is the world's first nuclear power plant project implemented on BOO ("build-own-operate") basis. In accordance with this model, Russia will build, own and operate the plant.
Moscow will pour $22 billion into its project of building the Akkuyu nuclear power plant. Turkey expects first unit of Akkuyu nuclear plant to be online by end 2023, Turkish media reports.
The construction of the nuclear power plant is expected to start in March next year.
The deputy director of energy policy of the Institute of Energy and Finances, Alexey Belogoriev, speaking with Vestnik Kavkaza, noted that the Akkuyu project is profitable for Russia because it allows us to remain in the export market of nuclear technologies. "The fact is that the market of new nuclear power plants has been shrinking in recent years, as many developed countries are scaling down their nuclear programs, while developing countries, especially China, have already created their own industry and services in all stages of nuclear power plant construction," he explained.
Rosatom is forced to be engaged in the project even considering the fact that the investment will not be returned in the near future. "The payback of such a project is at least 10-15 years, but it is an investment in the future. Akkuyu is one of the key projects of economic cooperation between Russia and Turkey. And if Turkey is satisfied with the results of the cooperation, it is quite possible that it will continue its nuclear program, and the well-implemented project will become an advertisement for our capabilities in the nuclear industry," Alexei Belogoriev noted.
Such projects are important because they allow to transform the of Russia's economic model in the long term. "The nuclear industry is one of the few industries where we remain to be one of world technical leaders, and we need to further develop it, along with space, oil and gas processing," the economist said.