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Akkuyu NPP's New Special Status to Boost Turkish-Russian Strategic Ties

© Sputnik / Aleksey Nikolskyi / Go to the photo bankFrom right: Russian President Vladimir Putin meets with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan at the Constantine Palace
From right: Russian President Vladimir Putin meets with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan at the Constantine Palace - Sputnik International
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Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's willingness to assign a strategic investment status to the Russian-Turkish Akkuyu nuclear power plant (NPP) project feeds into the concept of strategic relations between the two countries, Turkish lawmaker and parliamentary Planning and Budget Commission member Nejat Kocer told Sputnik Wednesday.

Turkey's first nuclear power plant Akkuyu - Sputnik International
Turkish Akkuyu NPP’s Special Status to Speed Up Construction
MOSCOW (Sputnik) — On Tuesday, Russian President Putin met with Erdogan in St. Petersburg to reset bilateral relations, for the first time since the November 2015 downing of a Russian aircraft by Turkey.

The two leaders agreed on a series of measures to boost economic and other ties. The Turkish president said that Ankara was ready to assign the status of strategic investment project to the Akkuyu NPP.

"The words regarding strategic investments, which were used during the meeting to describe the Akkuyu nuclear power plant project, complement the concept of strategic partnership between our countries. The given project is one of the largest investment projects to be implemented between Turkey and Russia. Keeping this in mind, the Turkish side's statement on its willingness to give the Akkuyu project strategic investment status comes very much naturally," Kocer said.

Russian President Vladimir Putin, left, welcomes Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in the Konstantin palace outside St.Petersburg, Russi - Sputnik International
Putin: Ankara Makes Positive Decision on Resuming Akkuyu, Turkish Stream
During Tuesday's meeting, the leaders of the two countries also discussed the Turkish Stream gas pipeline project, which was supposed to deliver Russian gas to Turkey and Southern Europe via the Black Sea before it was put on hold in November. On Tuesday, Erdogan said that the project could be restarted in the near future.

"The Turkish Stream is a another equally important project. Overall, projects related to transporting fuel into Europe via Turkey are very important and have a global significance. I therefore consider it highly important that the Russian and Turkish sides confirmed their intentions on Tuesday to implement the projects," Kocer added.

Russia and Turkey signed an agreement to construct and operate Turkey’s first nuclear power plant at the Akkuyu site in the southern Turkish province of Mersin in May 2010. The plant is expected to produce about 35 billion kilowatt-hours per year.

The Turkish Stream pipeline was projected to carry an annual volume of 63 billion cubic meters of gas prior to being canceled.

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