UK to provide £217 million for Turkish solar project

International Trade Secretary has today announced over £217 million worth of government backing for the largest solar facility in Turkey as the UK starts to deliver on pledges made at COP26.

UK Export Finance’s backing for Kalyon Enerji’s 1.35GW Karapinar solar project is the largest-ever guarantee it has provided for a solar project. UKEF’s guarantee will help support over 100 British jobs as the integration of the solar technology and the assembly of the solar power station will occur in the UK.

Equivalent to over 4,600 football pitches in size, the facility will deliver clean electricity to approximately two million Turkish households when completed in late 2022.

International Trade Secretary and UK International Champion on Adaptation and Resilience for the COP26 Presidency, Anne-Marie Trevelyan, said:

UK Export Finance is putting the UK at the heart of the global green energy transition. With over £200 million pounds worth of backing, we are helping to bring solar energy to 2 million Turkish households. Firm action from the UK alone is not enough to fight the climate crisis. UKEF’s financing encourages other countries to invest in renewable energy and opens new markets for UK businesses that will power a recovery underpinned by green jobs.

GE Energy Financial Services supported UKEF to agree the deal, with the UK’s export credit agency set to guarantee a £217 million (US $291 million) Buyer Credit Facility. This will enable GE to deploy its first FLEXINVERTER solar technology outside the US, supporting Turkey’s clean energy goals and facilitating trade for UK suppliers.

The project is part of the first Turkish solar YEKA tender launched by the Turkish Ministry of Energy under the Renewable Energy Resources Zones (YEKA) programme. The project will help Turkey to continue its expansion of renewable energy resources and commission 10 GW of solar capacity between 2017-27, according to IEA..

This announcement comes on the heels of the UN Climate Conference, COP26, where governments and businesses committed trillions of pounds in green investments and more than 40 countries quitting coal. The UK government made new commitments to eliminate climate harm from global finance and take action to support the global energy transition.

This comes amid a widening political rift between Turkey and other western nations. Just weeks ago Turkish president Erdogan instructed the foreign ministry to expel diplomats from Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Finland, New Zealand and the United States, after they issued a joint statement demanding the release of Osman Kavala, a Turkish civil society activist and philanthropist who has been detained for four years.