Renewables

Kacır: Turkey is No. 1 producer of solar panels in Europe

Kacır Turkey is No 1 producer of solar panels in Europe

Photo: Ministry of Industry and Technology

Published

February 29, 2024

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Published:

February 29, 2024

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The government is determined to keep providing incentives for renewable energy technology, Minister of Industry and Technology of Turkey Mehmet Fatih Kacır said. Such an approach made the country the number one producer of solar panels in Europe and the fourth in the wind power segment, the official stressed. The legal framework will be aligned with the European Green Deal including the introduction of an emissions trading system, he added.

Turkey is developing a sustainable and strong economic growth model that fosters green and digital transformation, according to Minister of Industry and Technology Mehmet Fatih Kacır. He said the government is preparing to introduce an emissions trading system. It would partly or fully shield exporters to the European Union from expenses related to its Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM) – the upcoming tax on carbon dioxide emissions.

The legal framework is undergoing harmonization with the European Green Deal, the minister explained. He vowed to strengthen further the infrastructure for the green transition, develop necessary technologies and bolster investments, employment, manufacturing and exports.

Turkey aims to surpass Vietnam, South Korea in solar manufacturing

The incentives for renewables, energy efficiency and environmental protection have paved the way for investments that reached TRL 637 billion since 2017, Kacır stressed. The sum is equivalent to EUR 18.8 billion now, but the value of the Turkish lira has dropped almost 90% against the euro in the same period.

“With the renewable energy production infrastructure we have created, Turkey is the first in Europe in solar panel production today,” the minister reiterated. He added that it is fifth in the wind power segment with its facilities for components such as towers, blades and generators. In November, Kacır said the country is fourth in the world in solar manufacturing and that it aims to soon become second.

To qualify for incentives, project developers in Turkey must source equipment and services domestically

In return for support, the government demands that project developers source almost three fourths of the equipment and services domestically. Subsidies for renewables, mostly awarded through auctions, motivate producers of solar panels and wind turbines to start or expand operations in the country.

China controls most of the global solar panel market, followed by Vietnam, South Korea and Turkey. Malaysia is the fifth-biggest manufacturer while the United States is next in the list.

Decarbonization efforts underway for steel, aluminum, cement, fertilizers

The share of renewables in total electricity capacity in Turkey has reached 55%, Kacır noted. The government has stepped up cooperation with international financial institutions to support green investments, he said.

“Through the Decarbonization Roadmaps for the Steel, Aluminum, Cement and Fertilizer Sectors, prepared with help from the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, we examined the feasibility of alternative technologies, expected emission reductions, the size of the required investments and the policies to be implemented in these strategic sectors,” the minister pointed out.

They are all included in the CBAM regulation alongside iron, hydrogen and electricity.

Sustainable, inclusive economic model is urgent

Kacır also pointed to the global impact of the crises such as wars, pandemics and climate change. “We are going through a significant crunch due to the desire for consumption, search for comfort, uncontrolled spending of limited resources and the desire to exploit resources without rules,” he stated.

Building a sustainable and inclusive economic model by addressing the said risks early is urgent for a livable world for future generations and preventing the deterioration of nature, the minister stressed.

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