Turkey and the UAE signed an intergovernmental agreement on 3 January for the development of power plants and associated mines in the Afsin-Elbistan region of southern Turkey. Under the agreement, Abu Dhabi National Energy Company (TAQA) will negotiate exclusively with Turkey’s Electricity Generation Company (EÜAŞ) and Ankara to develop projects with a combined power generation capacity of up to 7gw.

TAQA said the development of lignite (brown coal) resources is a priority for Turkey as it seeks to reduce its dependence on imported natural gas. In his 2010-14 strategic plan, Turkish Minister of Energy and Natural Resources Taner Yildiz set a target of integrating “our entire coal and hydraulic potential into our economy” by 2023. EÜAŞ estimates Turkey’s mainly low calorific value lignite resources at 11.5bn tons, of which 40% lies in the Afsin-Elbistan basin. (CONTINUED - 646 WORDS)