Turkey expects to begin the bidding process to build its third NPP next year. Murat Mercan, a former deputy energy minister, said the site for the project has been finalised and the plan is to build four reactors with a total installed capacity of around 5,000MWe. Turkey already has two NPPs under development – Akkuyu on the Mediterranean coast being built in cooperation with Russian state nuclear corporation Rosatom, and Sinop on the Black Sea coast with an Areva-Mitsubishi Heavy Industries joint venture.

Chinese companies intend to "aggressively" pursue the new contract, worth $22-25bn, China Daily reported, quoting an official. China’s State Nuclear Power Technology Corporation and US-based Westinghouse Electric Corporation are potential bidders, according to Mercan, who is chairman of the World Energy Council’s Turkish National Committee. "The bidding will be open to investors and firms from all over the world, but I think Chinese nuclear companies are very competitive in terms of price, safety and technology," he said. "China is building nuclear power plants using its own third-generation nuclear reactor and I don’t see why we can’t use it."

Earlier in March, commenting on the tension between Turkey and Russia, France’s ambassador to Ankara, Charles Fries, said the Akkuyu NPP project had not been suspended, although he refused to speculate on the future of the project. "Despite this, I can confirm that France is continuing its active involvement in the nuclear energy sector with Turkey, especially in terms of the ATMEA reactor project for the Sinop nuclear plant project," he added.