Two Turkish cities in Central Anatolia, Nigde-Bor and Karaman are two strong candidates for Turkey's second Renewable Energy Resource Zone Project (YEKA), the head of the Turkish section of Solar Energy Society said on Tuesday.
In an exclusive interview with Anadolu Agency, Kutay Kaleli said the second YEKA project would likely have 600 megawatts (MW) of installed solar capacity.
The second project, whose results are expected in mid-2018, follows the successful implementation of the first zone for YEKA in 2015.
Konya's Karapinar area in Central Anatolia was selected for Turkey's largest-ever solar energy investment.
In March 2017, a Kalyon-Hanwha consortium won the tender bid for the construction of a solar facility at a cost of $0.0699 per kilowatt-hour.
At the end of December last year, as part of the country's first YEKA solar project, a first integrated solar module, cell and panel production factory was launched in the capital Ankara. The panels and equipment produced at this facility will be used mainly for Konya's Karapinar solar zone and both for national and international markets.
The factory's investment amounts to around $1.3 billion.
The YEKA projects, including the solar facility and Research and Development Center, will contribute to meeting Turkey's increased energy demand while allowing the domestic production of technology and equipment for clean energy, Kaleli explained.
- Turkey's solar energy is growing
Over the last two to three years alone, Turkey installed over 3,500 MW of solar capacity.
"For 3,500 MW of installation, more than $2.5 billion was invested solely for solar energy development. In addition, more than 6 billion kilowatt-hours of electricity will be produced with the help of solar investments," he said, noting that such volumes are very good for the start of the country's solar sector.
In addition to capacity from the YEKA projects, Kaleli said the number of solar panel producers has reached as much as 27 to date, which can help the country not only meet its current power demand but can also sell and distribute the products to surrounding countries.
"Twenty-seven panel factories have 3.15 gigawatts of capacity," he said.
He also highlighted that a growing market will allow Turkish customers gain access to competitively priced and certified solar equipment.
Currently, the cost of a grid-connected solar panel roof system of 10 kilowatts costs around $10 thousand.
"So in today's currencies, it looks like a figure of between 35 thousand and 40 thousand Turkish liras," he explained, adding that the cost would vary depending on roof conditions.
By Gulsen Cagatay