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2015
Turkey’s Limak to invest $1 bln in power generation in 2015

Turkey’s Limak to invest $1 bln in power generation in 2015

Reuters / 08.04.2015
ISTANBUL, April 9 (Reuters) - Turkey’s Limak Holding plans to invest $1 billion this year to boost power generation capacity to over 5,000 megawatts (MW) in the next five years from the current 3,000 MW, the company’s chairman said.

Limak, which has assets in construction, cement and energy, already holds 35 percent in a consortium which has taken over the power distribution of 11 Turkish provinces through privatisation tenders in 2013 and 2014.

The $1 billion will be used to construct a new power plant and to boost efficiency at existing plants, Nihat Ozdemir told a news conference.

He said power demand was likely to rise after June as companies have been wary of making new investments due to political uncertainty ahead of elections.

"I believe the demand will rise after the (June) elections and will post an increase of 5 percent this year. According to our predictions, after 2017, there will be an energy deficit (in electricity)," he said.

Turkey has no deficit in power generation capacity but it has to import almost all the natural gas needed to feed its power plants. In 2013, nearly half of electricity generation was sourced by natural gas, followed by coal and hydro.

A rising population and economic growth have lifted Turkey’s power consumption in recent years, boosting energy investments.

Ozdemir also said Limak was looking to increase its market share in the domestic cement market to 20 percent from 12 percent through acquisitions and investments to boost capacity.

He also said the company planned to build two cement plants in Africa. "We will invest $50 million in Ivory Coast and $150 million in Mozambique to build production facilities," he said.

Limak is part of the Turkish consortium which made the winning bid in May 2013 to build and operate Istanbul’s third airport, envisaged as one of the world’s largest. Ozdemir said the 4.5 billion euro loan agreement for the financing of the first phase of the project is set to be signed in May. "The loan will have a 16-year maturity and will be secured by seven Turkish banks," he said.