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Japan Touts Hydrogen, Renewable Cooperation Potential With Türkiye


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There are extensive opportunities for energy cooperation between Türkiye and Japan, a senior Japanese official said Sunday, voicing particular optimism about the potential of next-generation sources such as hydrogen and renewable energy.

The statement from Takahiko Katsumata, the Japanese ambassador to Ankara, followed talks earlier this month between Energy and Natural Resources Minister Alparslan Bayraktar and Japanese Economy, Trade and Industry Minister Yasutoshi Nishimura.

The sides convened in Istanbul to assess potential energy collaborations between the two nations. Their discussions covered a wide range of areas, from critical minerals, renewable energy and energy efficiency to natural gas, new fuels and technologies.

The ministers also signed a joint statement to initiate the “Türkiye-Japan Energy Forum.”

“I believe there is a wide range of opportunities for collaboration with Türkiye. I have faith that new-generation energy sources, especially hydrogen and renewable energy, hold great promise for the future,” Katsumata told Anadolu Agency (AA).

Around the world, countries are competing to develop hydrogen to reduce emissions in some of the most difficult industries to decarbonize, such as steel production and chemical manufacture, and because of its potential usefulness in cleaning up the energy sector.

Katsumata further emphasized the commonalities between the two nations in the energy sector, noting that Japan, like Türkiye, heavily relies on external sources for its energy needs.

He also highlighted Turkey’s strategic location in the region, serving as a geographic transit point between energy-rich Middle Eastern countries and Russia, boasting abundant energy resources such as oil and natural gas, and European nations.

Japan is actively pursuing carbon neutrality by 2050 through its focus on nuclear and renewable energy, along with technology development efforts, according to the official.

“There are numerous private-sector initiatives related to this matter as well,” Katsumata noted.

Japan in June announced it plans to invest 15 trillion yen ($107.5 billion) over the next 15 years to supply the country with hydrogen to accelerate efforts to use the gas to shift to a low-carbon economy.

Katsumata said utilizing the “Türkiye-Japan Energy Forum” could help explore the possibilities of energy cooperation between the two countries.

For its part, Türkiye plans to triple its renewable energy capacity by 2053 as it strives to become a carbon-neutral economy. Nuclear energy is considered the primary option as the nation seeks to reduce coal’s share in electricity generation.

Russia is currently constructing Türkiye’s first nuclear power plant, Akkuyu, on the Mediterranean coast, which could eventually reduce the country’s dependence on foreign gas imports. Main construction work had finished on the first of the plant’s four reactors, Bayraktar said last week.

Türkiye’s ultimate goal is to increase electricity production capacity from nuclear energy to 20 gigawatts, nearly four times what the Akkuyu plant could generate when operating at full capacity within a few years.

Bayraktar said Türkiye hopes to finalize discussions with China and strike a deal on constructing the country’s third nuclear power plant “within the next few months.”

Türkiye has been engaged in talks about building a second power plant in the Black Sea city of Sinop, with Japan being one of the candidates, in addition to Russia.

While both countries aim to enhance opportunities for collaboration in energy, they are expected to cooperate not only on major projects like nuclear power plants but also on smaller-scale renewable energy projects.

Katsumata also highlighted the potential for advancing bilateral relations in the mining sector.

He said discussions between the two countries’ ministers had explored opportunities for cooperation in critical minerals, with the specifics of such cooperation to be determined by officials from both nations in the coming periods.

Source: Daily Sabah


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