Turkish solar market gathering pace

The 20th International Energy and Environment Fair and Conference (ICCI) kicked off on Thursday with the unmistakable impression of a domestic solar PV industry flowing with confidence.

Invited along to attend a shoulder event of the ICCI fair, pv magazine discovered that a number of exciting projects are in the pipeline, the largest of which – a 30 MW pv plant – is scheduled to begin construction soon.

A spokesperson for Istanbul-based EPC Tekno Ray Solar confirmed to pv magazine that Chinese solar company Yingli will play an active part in the plant’s development, while inverters are to be supplied by the Turkish distribution partner of Danfoss, Zenit (Izmir). Expect an official announcement and further details soon.

Once unveiled, such a project will go some way in confirming Turkey as a solar market to watch. During the ICCI event, Zenit CEO Can Sözen, and Danfoss Solar sales director Bruno Bach Jensen revealed to pv magazine that the former company is expecting to sell a total of 38 MW worth of Danfoss inverters and components for forthcoming domestic PV projects.

Furthermore, a keen emphasis is being placed on training and educating local Turkish nationals to enable the country to develop a more rounded domestic PV industry. The University of Izmir Katip Çelebi University is set to team with Zenit to deliver three to ten day certified training courses designed for engineers and installers, said Sözen, who expects as many as 1,000 participants to enroll this year alone. The courses will start at the beginning of July, this summer. This project is also backed by the city of Izmir, confirmed the Dean of the Faculty of Engineering and Architecture for Izmir Katip Çelebi University, Salih Okur.

Zenit has already partnered with Danfoss in commencing training courses for installers elsewhere in Turkey, confirmed Jensen. "Training, training, training," was his battle-cry, affirming that Danfoss is eager to lay solid foundations for the fledgling Turkish PV market.

The ICCI show – held at the Instanbul Expo Center – continues tomorrow, and by the time the doors close it is estimated that as many as 16,000 visitors will have passed through the doors, while several hundred energy companies have exhibited; a generous handful of which are solar companies.