Turkey: Solar Energy Incentives And Licensing Procedures In Turkey

Last Updated: 24 March 2016
Article by Serap Zuvin and Erdinc Kirmizioglu

The rapid growth of the Turkish economy over the past decade has led to an increasing energy need in the market. Between the years 2000 and 2013, the electricity demand of Turkey almost doubled1 and it is expected to be 580 billion kWh by 2020. Currently, a large proportion of the energy need is met by fossil fuels and the use of renewable energy resources is not sufficient, yet. Most of the fossil fuels such as oil and natural gas are currently being imported. Importation of fossil fuels plays a significant role on the trade deficit, hence cutting down the energy expenses will lead to a sharp fall on the current rate of deficit. Since 2010, Turkish government has been providing significant incentives and support to the renewable energy sector in order to decrease the dependence on foreign energy sources.

Which Legislation Applies?

The primary legislation for the investments on solar energy resources is the Law on Utilization of Renewable Energy Resources for Generating Electrical Energy2 ("RER Law"). Approvals and certificates that are required to be obtained for those investments are subject to the RER Law. Energy facilities within the scope of the RER Law are required to obtain a Renewable Energy Source Certificate in order to enjoy the incentives provided there. How to enjoying the incentives are detailed in the Regulation on Certification and Support of Renewable Energy Sources3 ("Certification Regulation") as a supplementary to the RER Law.

The main source of legislation for the electricity sector in Turkey is Electricity Market Law4 ("Electricity Market Law"), governing the electricity generation, transmission, distribution, wholesale and retail sale, import and export, market operation activities including the rights and obligations of all real and legal persons engaged in those activities. The rules and procedures relating to the licensing issues, as well as necessary permits, which must be granted by the Electricity Market Regulatory Authority ("EMRA") are regulated under the Electricity Market Licensing Regulation5 ("Licensing Regulation").

How to Obtain a License?

Legal entities willing to incorporate generation facilities based on solar power need to obtain a solar power license from EMRA. Following the application to EMRA, entities fulfilling the requirements provided under the License Regulation are granted a pre-license at the outset, within 24 months following the date of application. During this time period, companies are supposed to (i) obtain the necessary permits for commencing the construction; (ii) demonstrate that they have obtained the ownership or real property rights of the land on which the generation facility is to be established; (iii) submit the relevant documents and information regarding the structure of the shareholders, payment documents including letter of guarantee and pre-license fee, and (iv) collect the solar measurement data at the site where the facility shall be established. After that, EMRA evaluates the solar power license application and considers the eligibility of the project.

If there are multiple license applications for the same site, Turkish Electricity Transmission Company, a state owned entity that controls the transmission sector, organizes a tender under the Licensing Regulation to determine on the eligibility among the applicants. The highest bidder is granted a pre-license to produce solar power. If there are no competing bids for the same area, the license applicant may be granted a license even when the requirements are fulfilled in the pre-licensing period. It should be noted that for each activity to be engaged in, and for each facility where the same activity is conducted, separate licenses must be obtained. Such generation licenses are granted for a term of minimum 10 years and maximum 49 years. For the time being, only one licensed solar energy plant is being operated in Turkey namely Solentegre Enerji Yatirimlari A.S. which was granted the first ever solar electricity generation license for an 8 MW facility to be installed in Elazig.

On the other hand, solar electricity generation activities having a maximum 1 MW capacity are not subject to licensing procedure of the EMRA. Therefore, electricity generation facilities based on the solar energy are allowed to carry out activities without the burden of obtaining a license. Moreover, real persons or legal entities generating electricity for their own needs will not be required to obtain a license from EMRA as long as they remain disconnected to the transmission and distribution network and do not engage in wholesale or retail activities to sell the electricity produced in these facilities.

What Kind of Incentives are Available?

Following the acquisition of the electricity generation license, legal entities are granted a Renewable Energy Resource Certificate ("RER Certificate") by EMRA in order to enjoy available incentives. According to RER Law, the RER Certificate holders may enjoy a purchase guarantee incentive. Existing solar energy plants or the ones to be established before December 31, 2020 can enjoy feed-in tariff at USD 13.3 per kWh as a fixed minimum electricity sale price. Solar power generation facilities may enjoy the fixed prices during the first 10 years of their start of operations. In addition to that, solar energy license holders are exempt from paying the annual license fees for the first 8 years following the date of completion of the facility.

Furthermore, solar energy facilities can enjoy the incentives for the usage of electro-mechanical equipments which are manufactured in Turkey. If the local mechanical and electro-mechanical equipments are used in a solar power plant, an additional fee ranges between USD 0.4/kWh and USD 2.4/kWh is granted. This local content fee is added to the foregoing feed-in tariff fee and this advantage applies during the first 5 years of the start of operations of the facilities. Investors willing to benefit from such advantage must prove that the components are produced in Turkey and obtain a "Local Component Certificate" from the Ministry of Energy.

Another incentive provided for the solar power plants is the 85% discount on the amount of the lease or right of use of the State owned land within the first 10 years of their start of operation. In the event that the investments are made in the counties with a population below 10.000, then the investment costs are 100% covered by the Agriculture and Rural Development Support Institution of Turkey.

Moreover, renewable energy facilities having a RER Certificate may also enjoy remarkable tax incentives that are as follows;

  • The earnings to be acquired from the solar energy plants shall be exempt from VAT.
  • Investments with an incentive certificate shall be exempt from customs tariff. No customs tariff shall be paid for imported system tools of solar energy plants.
  • Companies operating solar power plants are not subject to the corporate income tax for 5 years.

The Need for Further Legislative Adjustments

Turkey is in an advantageous area for generation of generation of solar energy especially when compared to other European countries. The total annual hours of sunshine is reported to be 2640 in Turkey6, while the average global radiation is reported as 1,311 kWh/m2. On the other hand, incentives and support mechanism are still not appealing for investors when compared with other European countries. For instance; while the solar tariff purchase in Turkey is USD 13.3/kWh (Euro 12/kWh), it is Euro 40-60.16/kWh in Germany. Furthermore, the duration of guaranteed purchase of electricity in Turkey is 10 years but this period is 20 years in EU countries. From investors' point of view, feed-in tariffs need to be guaranteed for 15- 20 years in order to be able to achieve the required returns. In this respect, certain amendments are expected to be made in the regulations by the Turkish authorities. Apart from the efficiency perspective, legislators must bear in mind that in the era of a climate change, decreasing the carbon emissions of countries is a pre-requisite as an international and inter-generational responsibility. Being a clean and domestic energy source, solar energy should take larger part in the energy future of the countries.


1. Turkish Electricity Transmission Company; http://www.teias.gov.tr/istatistikler.aspx

2. Law on Utilization of Renewable Energy Resources for Generating Electrical Energy; dated May 10, 2005 and numbered 5346 and published in the Official Gazette dated May 18, 2005 and numbered 25819.

3. Regulation on Certification and Support of Renewable Energy Sources; published in the Official Gazette dated October 1, 2013 and numbered 28782.

4. Electricity Market Law; dated March 14, 2013 and numbered 6446 and published in the Official Gazette dated March 30, 2013 and numbered 28603.

5. Electricity Market Licensing Regulation; published in the Official Gazette dated November 2, 2013 and numbered 28809.

6. General Directorate of Renewable Energy; http://www.eie.gov.tr/eie-web/turkce/YEK/gunes/tgunes.html

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on Mondaq.com.

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

Similar Articles
Relevancy Powered by MondaqAI
Yurdakul International Legal Consultancy
Kilinc Law & Consulting
Some comments from our readers…
“The articles are extremely timely and highly applicable”
“I often find critical information not available elsewhere”
“As in-house counsel, Mondaq’s service is of great value”

Related Topics
Similar Articles
Relevancy Powered by MondaqAI
Yurdakul International Legal Consultancy
Kilinc Law & Consulting
Related Articles
Up-coming Events Search
Font Size:
Mondaq on Twitter
Mondaq Free Registration
Gain access to Mondaq global archive of over 375,000 articles covering 200 countries with a personalised News Alert and automatic login on this device.
Mondaq News Alert (some suggested topics and region)
Select Topics
Registration (please scroll down to set your data preferences)

Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including your content preferences, for three primary purposes (full details of Mondaq’s use of your personal data can be found in our Privacy and Cookies Notice):

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting to show content ("Content") relevant to your interests.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, news alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our content providers ("Contributors") who contribute Content for free for your use.

Mondaq hopes that our registered users will support us in maintaining our free to view business model by consenting to our use of your personal data as described below.

Mondaq has a "free to view" business model. Our services are paid for by Contributors in exchange for Mondaq providing them with access to information about who accesses their content. Once personal data is transferred to our Contributors they become a data controller of this personal data. They use it to measure the response that their articles are receiving, as a form of market research. They may also use it to provide Mondaq users with information about their products and services.

Details of each Contributor to which your personal data will be transferred is clearly stated within the Content that you access. For full details of how this Contributor will use your personal data, you should review the Contributor’s own Privacy Notice.

Please indicate your preference below:

Yes, I am happy to support Mondaq in maintaining its free to view business model by agreeing to allow Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors whose Content I access
No, I do not want Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors

Also please let us know whether you are happy to receive communications promoting products and services offered by Mondaq:

Yes, I am happy to received promotional communications from Mondaq
No, please do not send me promotional communications from Mondaq
Terms & Conditions

Mondaq.com (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd (Mondaq). Mondaq grants you a non-exclusive, revocable licence to access the Website and associated services, such as the Mondaq News Alerts (Services), subject to and in consideration of your compliance with the following terms and conditions of use (Terms). Your use of the Website and/or Services constitutes your agreement to the Terms. Mondaq may terminate your use of the Website and Services if you are in breach of these Terms or if Mondaq decides to terminate the licence granted hereunder for any reason whatsoever.

Use of www.mondaq.com

To Use Mondaq.com you must be: eighteen (18) years old or over; legally capable of entering into binding contracts; and not in any way prohibited by the applicable law to enter into these Terms in the jurisdiction which you are currently located.

You may use the Website as an unregistered user, however, you are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the Content or to receive the Services.

You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these Terms or with the prior written consent of Mondaq. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information from the Content. Nor shall you extract information about users or Contributors in order to offer them any services or products.

In your use of the Website and/or Services you shall: comply with all applicable laws, regulations, directives and legislations which apply to your Use of the Website and/or Services in whatever country you are physically located including without limitation any and all consumer law, export control laws and regulations; provide to us true, correct and accurate information and promptly inform us in the event that any information that you have provided to us changes or becomes inaccurate; notify Mondaq immediately of any circumstances where you have reason to believe that any Intellectual Property Rights or any other rights of any third party may have been infringed; co-operate with reasonable security or other checks or requests for information made by Mondaq from time to time; and at all times be fully liable for the breach of any of these Terms by a third party using your login details to access the Website and/or Services

however, you shall not: do anything likely to impair, interfere with or damage or cause harm or distress to any persons, or the network; do anything that will infringe any Intellectual Property Rights or other rights of Mondaq or any third party; or use the Website, Services and/or Content otherwise than in accordance with these Terms; use any trade marks or service marks of Mondaq or the Contributors, or do anything which may be seen to take unfair advantage of the reputation and goodwill of Mondaq or the Contributors, or the Website, Services and/or Content.

Mondaq reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to take any action that it deems necessary and appropriate in the event it considers that there is a breach or threatened breach of the Terms.

Mondaq’s Rights and Obligations

Unless otherwise expressly set out to the contrary, nothing in these Terms shall serve to transfer from Mondaq to you, any Intellectual Property Rights owned by and/or licensed to Mondaq and all rights, title and interest in and to such Intellectual Property Rights will remain exclusively with Mondaq and/or its licensors.

Mondaq shall use its reasonable endeavours to make the Website and Services available to you at all times, but we cannot guarantee an uninterrupted and fault free service.

Mondaq reserves the right to make changes to the services and/or the Website or part thereof, from time to time, and we may add, remove, modify and/or vary any elements of features and functionalities of the Website or the services.

Mondaq also reserves the right from time to time to monitor your Use of the Website and/or services.


The Content is general information only. It is not intended to constitute legal advice or seek to be the complete and comprehensive statement of the law, nor is it intended to address your specific requirements or provide advice on which reliance should be placed. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the Content for any purpose. All Content provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers hereby exclude and disclaim all representations, warranties or guarantees with regard to the Content, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. To the maximum extent permitted by law, Mondaq expressly excludes all representations, warranties, obligations, and liabilities arising out of or in connection with all Content. In no event shall Mondaq and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use of the Content or performance of Mondaq’s Services.


Mondaq may alter or amend these Terms by amending them on the Website. By continuing to Use the Services and/or the Website after such amendment, you will be deemed to have accepted any amendment to these Terms.

These Terms shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of England and Wales and you irrevocably submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of England and Wales to settle any dispute which may arise out of or in connection with these Terms. If you live outside the United Kingdom, English law shall apply only to the extent that English law shall not deprive you of any legal protection accorded in accordance with the law of the place where you are habitually resident ("Local Law"). In the event English law deprives you of any legal protection which is accorded to you under Local Law, then these terms shall be governed by Local Law and any dispute or claim arising out of or in connection with these Terms shall be subject to the non-exclusive jurisdiction of the courts where you are habitually resident.

You may print and keep a copy of these Terms, which form the entire agreement between you and Mondaq and supersede any other communications or advertising in respect of the Service and/or the Website.

No delay in exercising or non-exercise by you and/or Mondaq of any of its rights under or in connection with these Terms shall operate as a waiver or release of each of your or Mondaq’s right. Rather, any such waiver or release must be specifically granted in writing signed by the party granting it.

If any part of these Terms is held unenforceable, that part shall be enforced to the maximum extent permissible so as to give effect to the intent of the parties, and the Terms shall continue in full force and effect.

Mondaq shall not incur any liability to you on account of any loss or damage resulting from any delay or failure to perform all or any part of these Terms if such delay or failure is caused, in whole or in part, by events, occurrences, or causes beyond the control of Mondaq. Such events, occurrences or causes will include, without limitation, acts of God, strikes, lockouts, server and network failure, riots, acts of war, earthquakes, fire and explosions.

By clicking Register you state you have read and agree to our Terms and Conditions