Turkey is a key and safe harbor for energy investments, the Turkish Energy Minister Berat Albayrak said Sunday at the 22nd World Petroleum Congress in Istanbul, Anadolu reported.
Albayrak, speaking at the opening ceremony of the Congress, of which Anadolu Agency is the global communications partner, said the oil and gas sector had and would continue to have an economic impact for decades to come, and therefore, investments in this sector are required for future energy security.
The minister hailed the rising popularity of renewable energy while asserting that coal continues to be a crucial energy resource along with oil, natural gas and nuclear power.
"As you all know, oil and gas investments decreased due to low prices. On the other hand, projections tell us that oil and will meet around 15 percent of global energy needs in the near future," Albayrak said.
He praised Turkey's steps during the low oil price environment and said that despite rapid demand, growth in generation capacity tripled in the country. However, he warned that the continuation of security of supply remains critical.
"We ensured security of supply by providing sustainable market conditions and now we have begun focusing on oil and gas exploration in the Mediterranean and the Black Sea region," he said.
Turkey consumes around 50 billion cubic meters of gas per year, Albayrak said.
"Fifteen years ago we could provide gas only to five provinces, but now all 81 provinces in Turkey receive gas," he said.
He added in order to ensure gas supply security, Turkey increased its LNG capacity and launched its first Floating Storage Regasification Unit (FSRU) in 2016.
"The second one will also become operational by the end of this year. Gas storage capacity is also critical for us. We plan to increase it also as an emerging market with political stability," Albayrak stressed.
Turkey sees energy as a peacemaker and a supporter of prosperity.
"Within this perspective, we introduce the motto 'share for peace'. Turkey is a reliable partner for energy projects. We will continue to support regional projects for security of supply.
Turkey is a key and safe harbor for investments - a regional, reliable actor and key for energy. The country is providing a stable, predictable environment for investments," he said.