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US sanctions will not affect construction of Turkish Stream, Akkuyu NPP — energy minister

The Russian energy minister comments on the new US sanctions

MOSCOW, August 18. /TASS/. New US sanctions against Russia do not pose a threat to the construction of the Turkish Stream gas pipeline and the Akkuyu nuclear power plant, Russian Energy Minister and the co-chairman of the Russian-Turkish intergovernmental commission Alexander Novak said in an interview with the Rossiya 24 television channel.

"All the contracts concerning the construction of the Turkish Stream gas pipeline have been concluded, the construction is in full swing, so we proceed from the fact that the project will be implemented regardless of what regulations or laws are adopted. As for the law that was adopted and signed in the United States - there is a lot of uncertainty about it," he said.

According to the minister, the sanctions won’t affect the construction of the Akkuyu nuclear power plant either. "No, we do not see any risks here," he said.

"The Turkish party wants the NPP to be built by the 100 anniversary of the Republic of Turkey, which is 2023. Therefore, in the near future - and we have just discussed it today with the minister and the economy and other Turkish partners - the procedures for obtaining the necessary permits will be speeded up," he said.

"We are fully ready to start the construction procedures of the non-nuclear part in a simplified mode. I hope that at the end of this and in the beginning of the next year we will see the project’s start. We do not anticipate any problems, everything is in accordance with the schedule. Moreover, if we work in a faster mode the project may be implemented a year earlier," Novak added.

Deputy minister of energy and natural resources of Turkey Fatih Donmez said the ceremony of foundation laying for power units of the Akkuyu Nuclear Power Plant may be held already this year.

"We hope we will participate this year in laying of the foundation of Akkuyu [power units - TASS] and start implementation of this project," the official said.

Akkuyu NPP is expected to be launched by 2023, Donmez said.

Novak sais Moscow and Ankara discussed new projects related to construction of hydropower plants and thermal power plants and deliveries of required equipment within the framework of an international fair in Izmir.

"We discussed new promising projects with partners related to construction of power plants, including hydropower plants, where Russia has rich experience in building power plants, and deliveries of relevant power generation equipment by our companies, Power Machines in particular," Novak said.

The parties discussed opportunities of cooperating in the alternative energy sphere and touched issues of making appropriate equipment for solar and wind power plants," the minister added.