*CORRECTS VARIOUS FACTS AND STATEMENTS
Fatih Birol, the Executive Director of International Energy Agency, who took office in his new role on Sept. 1, told Anadolu Agency on Monday that issues such as nuclear policy, which require a long term view, should be considered a state policy rather than a government policy.
When asked about Turkey’s nuclear energy policy, the head of the International Energy Agency said that Turkey needs a permanent and strong state policy for nuclear energy.
“As an important energy hub, Turkey should endlessly work on international energy projects,” Birol said, adding that “it is crucial that the right signals are given to investors and technology companies”.
He added that for example Japan, despite still recovering from the side-effects of the 2011 accident at the Fukushima nuclear power plant, has decided to re-open some dormant nuclear power plants to meet its energy needs.
Commenting on hydrocarbon exploration in the Mediterranean Sea off the Egyptian coast and Israel, Birol said Turkey still remains both geopolitically and economically a very attractive option for gas exports from Israel towards the west, as LNG exports would come at a higher economic cost.
On Sept. 9, Italian oil company ENI announced that the company discovered a giant natural gas field in the Mediterranean Sea off the Egyptian coast.
Birol emphasized that Turkey is well placed to potentially transfer gas from this and other discoveries in the region and thus these important projects should be considered from both economic and political viewpoints.
- No change on oil prices in near future
Birol also stated that despite ongoing global geopolitical challenges, both supply and demand side factors indicate that oil prices are likely to remain at a similar level of $40 to $50 per barrel.
- Climate change
Birol highlighted that two thirds of emissions come from the energy sector. Thus, he underlined that key to addressing climate change is to reduce carbon emissions from the energy sector.
The COP21 Climate Conference in Paris will be a discussion place to reach such a decision,' he said, and added that if a binding agreement was reached this would strengthen energy efficiency, renewable energy and low carbon technologies and also nuclear power.
By Gulsen Cagatay