Taqa Delays Decision on $12 Billion Turkey Power Project to 2014

Abu Dhabi National Energy Co., the United Arab Emirates-based utility known as Taqa, said today it is deferring to next year an investment decision on a proposed power plant project in Turkey.

Taqa is delaying a decision on whether to proceed because of other spending priorities, a company spokesman, who asked not to be identified by name in line with company policy, said by telephone from Abu Dhabi today.

The agreement to study plans for developing coal mines and power plants is part of an intergovernmental accord signed in January between the U.A.E. and Turkey. The countries and Taqa signed a memorandum of understanding for the project in southern Turkey’s Afsin-Elbistan region. Taner Yildiz, Turkey’s energy minister, said in December that investment in the project to boost power output to 7,000 megawatts may total $12 billion.

Taqa is pleased with the progress of talks on the project as part of U.A.E.-Turkish government cooperation, the company’s spokesman added.

In January, Taqa said the U.A.E. utility and Turkey’s Electricity Generation Co. will work together on a plan to buy and modernize an existing 1,400-megawatt coal-fired facility, and starting work on another and on the mines.

Turkey is developing its coal, or lignite, deposits to cut reliance on imported natural gas as a fuel for power plants. The Afsin-Elbistan basin holds about 40 percent of Turkey’s lignite deposits, Taqa said in January.

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