A personal evaluation of local Energy Market
Those of 1968 generation will recall that there was a “Nuclear” division in the METU Mechanical Engineering Department along with “Heat” and “Mechanics”
We had many graduates with BSc and MSc degrees from “Nuclear” division all confident that they could design, build and operate a Nuclear Power plant
We had also students from other Middle East Countries who were studying together with their Turkish colleagues, even from Iran
Then they completed their university studies, got their diplomas and returned to their countries, and work for their careers
In Turkey Turkish METU graduates started to work in Turkish Electricity Authority, Nuclear Energy Department
Then years passed, Turkey could not design/build/ Operate her own Nuclear Power plant during all these years
Time passed by with no serious development in Turkish Nuclear energy
We had serious corruption news in Turkish Nuclear tenders
Then IMF asked the government to stop the work on Nuclear Energy tenders since that activity put high financial risk on Turkish Treasury. Work ceased in early 2000s
Nuclear Energy Division of Turkish Electricity Authority was also closed and its mostly METU Graduate engineers were either transferred to other departments or asked to leave the establishment
We have almost 38 years passed after 1968 years
What do you think of those METU ME Nuclear graduates since 1968s years??
Some of Turkish graduates formed their own private companies in Energy sector.
Most of them were very successful in their own private business
They constructed high capacity coal mine transfer systems in Thermal power plants
They completed mechanical installation works in Thermal power plants
They completed site installation activities abroad especially in the Middle East Countries as well as in the Central Asia,
They formed their own fabrication plants in order to make fabrication of steel structures for Industrial installations
They worked in other public enterprises, in the Ministries
They were promoted to high prestigious public posts
Some of them went to abroad to earn their life and pursue their own careers
Some of them worked in Nuclear Power Plants in those foreign lands
They occupied high level posts in USA, Canada, Switzerland Nuclear Power industries
It is not untrue to say that some of Iranian METU graduates worked in their own Nuclear Industry in Iran, and today Iranian METU graduates cover the decision-making posts of top management level in Iranian Nuclear business. They construct, design and operate the Nuclear power plants in Iran.
Whatever you say on Iranian business environment, you may critizise their products, their outputs, their political environment or else.
But you should evaluate carefully the latest point they have reached in their own Nuclear technology
Today Iranian Nuclear technology is somewhat the product of METU Mechanical Engineering department Nuclear division in 1968s.
We wish we could have well utilized that great human resource for the Local Turkish Nuclear Power plant to solve our prevailing energy problem.
We shall enter into a serious energy crisis in 2008-2009.
That is foreseen by all parties.
Our big players of our Private enterprise have foreseen the bottleneck
They had meetings one after another.
Our energy market is not so easy, not so profitable.
It is a very tough sector.
It is a very difficult market.
Public enterprises cannot make new investments, they have no resources to allocate, no money to spend.
Nobody wants to make new investments,
just because our Energy market lost its reliability in the financial markets.
International investors do not want to make investment, they do not want to finance any project, they foresee high risk.
For that high risk, they calculate a high interest rate.
Our energy markets/ projects are not “bankable”
The documents created to finance the new energy projects are not “bankable documents”
They are not real/ internationally recognized “bankable documents”
Nobody shows any interest into new energy projects
If you ask any international reputable company to prepare any proposal for your new energy project, you cannot get their response
The prefeasibility / feasibility documents are not in international standards
Public tenders are not bankable, they ask impossible clauses, these are not not bankable
The feasibility documents prepared in the local market for billion US Dollar projects are at low quality, they are not acceptable if not miserable
Today go to Foster Wheeler or Lurgi, or Alstom
And ask a proposal for any of your energy projects
Go and ask Mitsubishi or Hitachi
Or any Swiss/ Canadian energy company
See if they respond
I don’t think so
You are at the mercy of Indian- China- Korean companies
Newcomers in the energy business, with low prices with their own technology
Turkey could not create her own technology in energy business
Although we had huge human engineering power in 1968s
Turkish companies could not create high value added energy products in energy business for her own local market to generate cheap energy
Not only Nuclear technology
We even cannot construct our own Thermal power plant, not even simple coal firing plants
These are a number of steel tube fabrication not a space shuttle
Our own local private companies cannot cover scope other than “civil works, foundations, and site installation”, at so low profit margins, with low value added levels, based on unqualified or semi-qualified labor work
Nobody wants to leave that unqualified or semi-qualified labor work to foreign companies, local workers resist to foreign participation as in Kazakhstan
We still hope that we can complete huge works with so little early preparation
We still think that we can handle/ create “bankable feasibility documents” with in-house excel sheets
I occupied seats at the foreign side of the negotiation table many times in the past
Foreign side comes to the negotiation table well prepared with all calculated risks of the subject project, they make serious “due diligence” works
They evaluate the project risks carefully
They receive your "In-house prepared bankable feasibility document"
They will advise that they will carefully review the document
That review will not be finalized
And you wait for the final decision in years and years
Turkish people should know that they should create their own technology
They should support their own human resources, more funds to be allocated to R&D, more money for young engineering graduates, more software and hardware supplies
Believe me that our your engineering graduates are no different than those of their counterparts in the foreign companies
In some of foreign engineering companies , there are even high level managers / directors with Turkish origin
We shall have a very important Panel in METU Visnelik Ankara Alumni Association on
"Current Energy Issues of Turkey in 2006"
on 7th December 2006 Thursday at 1900 hours
in Alumni premises main Conference room.
Speakers are key professionals from Public and Private enterprises as well as reputable academicians of METU.
Panel is open for all interested parties and it is free-of charge.
Tea- coffee services are available and free-of-charge.
We have a big parking lot, free-of-charge
We invite you all
Thank you and best regards