December 24, 2010 / 4:16 AM / 9 years ago

Japan, Turkey sign nuclear plant cooperation deal

TOKYO, Dec 24 (Reuters) - Japan and Turkey have signed a memorandum of understanding to cooperate in building Turkey’s second nuclear power plant, Japan’s trade ministry said, after a deal under negotiation between Turkey and South Korea apparently fell through.

Japan and Turkey aim to conclude a deal within three months on a nuclear plant in the Black Sea coastal town of Sinop, Turkish Energy Minister Taner Yildiz and Japanese Trade Minister Akihiro Ohata said on Friday.

Turkey assessed alternate bids from several countries on the facility after talks with South Korea languished. [ID:nLDE6A91LG]

Turkey has also reached an agreement with Russia to build its first nuclear power plant on its southern shore and the licensing process has already begun.

The Sinop plant, which would have four reactors and generating capacity of 5,600 megawatts, is targeted to start operations in 2019, Turkish government officials have said.

Analysts have estimated the project could cost $10 billion.

Turkey wants to build two nuclear plants to reduce its dependence on imported energy and cover a looming power shortfall.

Turkey wants about 10,000 megawatts of nuclear capacity installed by 2023, according to Reuters Project Finance International. (Reporting by Osamu Tsukimori; Editing by Edmund Klamann)

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