Coal mining in turkey

Turkey wants to catch up with the leading industrialized nations and become one of the world’s ten largest economies by 2023 at the latest. The government knows that this target is likely to be achievable only with active industry support. With subsidies and tax breaks, it is attempting to protect strategically important industries, u. a. To strengthen the engineering and especially the power industry. However, the Turkish machinery market, which includes mining equipment, suffered from reduced economic growth and, above all, subdued investment activity until the elections in November 2015. According to the TuIK statistics office, gross fixed capital formation fell by 1.3% in real terms in 2014 compared with the previous year. At the same time, gross domestic product (GDP) increased by 2.9% (Table 1).

Table 1. Key economic data for Turkey. // Table 1. Economic key data Turkey. Source/Source: GTAI 2014

The combination of stagnant domestic demand with increasing problems in export markets is leading to reduced sales expectations. The 4% industry growth targeted for 2015 by the Machinery Manufacturers Association MIB (Makina Imalatcilari Birligi) is probably too optimistic in light of the current economic turmoil. According to publications by this association, machinery classified as capital goods generated the equivalent of just under 41.0 billion. US $, 3.5% less than in 2013. Sales growth of 3 to 4 % is expected for 2015 (Table 2).

Table 2. Turkish machine imports (in US$ million). // Table 2. Turkish imports of machinery (in million. US-$). Source/Source: GTAI 2014

However, despite the current economic weakness, the Turkish machinery market should have considerable potential for development in the medium term because of the high need for modernization and rationalization in the manufacturing industry. German mechanical engineering companies benefit in Turkey from their high reputation. Most of them have long-standing business relations. In addition to pure supply business, there are good opportunities for investment in local manufacturing operations.

2 Energy supply

Fig. 1 Primary energy consumption in Turkey // Fig. 1 Primary energy consumption in Turkey. Source: Statista 2015

Fig. 1. Primary energy consumption in Turkey. // Fig. 1. Primary energy consumption in Turkey. Source/Source: Statista 2015

Fig. 2. Zonguldak coal-fired power plant. // Photo 2. Zonguldak coal-fired power plant. Photo/photo: von Hartlieb

Coal accounts for a good third of Turkey’s primary energy consumption (Fig. 1). The use of domestic coal reserves for power supply is an important goal of Turkish energy policy (Fig. 2). Coal-fired power plants run mainly on lignite. By the beginning of 2015, a total of eight major coal-fired power plants with a capacity of more than 4 GW had been built.200 MW privatized. An important coal-fired power plant project is the planned modernization and expansion of the Afsin-Elbistan power plant (4 x 344 MW). In the past, the majority of strategically important companies in Turkey were under state control. Despite efforts to liberalize the Turkish energy market in recent years, the state continues to play a major role.

Table. 3 Planned investments in power-plant capacities by 2023 // Table 3 Planned investments in power-plant capacities by 2023 Source: Turkish Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources

Table. 3. Planned investments in power-plant capacities by 2023. // Table 3. Planned investments in power plant capacities until 2023. Source: Turkish Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources

According to the plans of the Turkish Ministry of Energy, an additional 49 GW of capacity is to be built by 2023. Of this, 14 GW is to come from wind energy. Strong expansion is planned for coal and hydropower plants with 21.5 GW (Table 3). The expansion of power generation capacity is accompanied by progressive liberalization of the energy market and the involvement of the private sector in projects. Large private companies such as Enerjisa (Sabanci Holding), Limak, Borusan EnBW (Borusan Holding) and Zorlu Enerji (Zorlu Holding) are stepping up their investments in the production and distribution of electricity.

Turkey’s current five-year plan (2014 – 2018) again marks the energy sector as strategically extremely important. Demand for energy continues to regularly exceed available capacity. The government therefore continues to grant subsidies and tax breaks for investments. By 2023, investments in the energy sector are budgeted at 130 billion. US-$ budgeted. Modernization will involve z. B. the recently privatized power plants Yatagan (630 MW), Kemerkoy (630 MW), Yenikoy (420 MW), Orhaneli (210 MW) and Tuncbilek (365 MW). In addition, greenfield projects of new underground lignite mines are on the agenda.

Investments in Turkish energy production play a crucial role not only for security of supply, but also for easing the trade and current account balances. By making more intensive use of locally available resources such as coal, the high import costs for natural gas, crude oil and hard coal, which cost about. US $, will be radically reduced. The private share in Turkish electricity production has steadily increased in recent years. The share of non-state-owned companies in total power plant capacity increased from 42% to 57% between the years 2006 and 2012, according to government figures. Its share of electricity generation rose from 52 to 62 percent.

Electricity consumption by private households continues to increase, and industry is also expected to expand further. Between 2007 and 2012, electricity consumption increased by an average of 5.6% per year. Experts estimate that by 2023 installed power plant capacities will have increased from today’s rd. 65.000 to 100.000 MW will have to be increased for the government to meet its growth targets by 2023. Assuming 1.5 million. 60 billion would have to be invested per megawatt of capacity over the next ten years. US $ must be invested in electricity production in order to secure the supply of the factories and households.

3 Mining

Fig. 3. Turkey’s main natural resources. // Fig. 3. Turkey’s most important mineral resources. Source/source: Celebi, 2007

Turkey has a highly diversified mining industry (1), although it accounts for only 1.5 % of GDP (12 billion. US-$). The country produced at least 53 different commodities from coal to ores to industrial minerals in 2013 4.500 different deposits (Fig. 3). In total, approx. 150.000 people are employed in the mining industry, of whom approx. 12.000 at the state-owned TTK underground coal mine. The industry still has a very low degree of mechanization and small plant sizes. With its own crude oil production from the Batman and Adiyaman provinces, Turkey was able to generate approx. 9.6% of own demand. For natural gas, this was achieved for only 1.5 % of the volume consumed.

Fig. 4. Hard coal and lignite deposits in Turkey . // Fig. 4. Lignite and hard coal deposits in Turkey. Source/Source: Ankara University

Coal is the most important domestic fossil fuel in Turkey. Coal production reached nearly 2.8 million tons in 2013. t of hard coal and 63 million. t of lignite. The hard coal deposits are found on the Black Sea coast in the Zonguldak region, while the lignite deposits are spread across the country (Fig. 4). The most important mining regions are Afsin-Elbistan, Soma, Sivas-Kangal, Tuncbilek and Can.

The Turkish government expects consumption of lignite and hard coal to increase to a total of 118.4 Mtoe by 2020. By then, domestic lignite production is expected to multiply and hard coal imports are expected to increase by a factor of 15 compared to 2005.

3.1 hard coal

1.13 billion in hard coal reserves. t. Turkey covers 86% of its coal needs through domestic production. It operates z. Zt. Five underground coal mines. Since coal production does not meet the demand, Turkey imports over 25 million tons of coal. t/a (2013), mainly from Russia (33%), Colombia (24%), the U.S. (14%), South Africa (11%), and Australia (5%). Imports are mainly used for electrical power for steel production and cement production.

At present, the entire coal production is provided by the state-owned company TTK. TTK extracts up to 3.3 million. t of hard coal per year. The calorific value of the coal extracted ranges between 6.200 and 7.200 kcal/kg. Mining is mainly carried out from partially mechanized longwall operations with high personnel input. TTK has only one fully mechanized longwall operation (Fig. 5).

Fig. 5: TTK longwall face // Fig. 5: Longwall of the TTK. Photo/Photo: DMT Consulting

Fig. 5. TTK longwall face. // Fig. 5. Longwall of TTK. Photo/Photo: DMT Consulting

Currently, a private investor, Hattat Holding, is developing another underground coal mine in the Amasra region. TTK also contracts with private mining companies to develop TTK-owned deposits. The private company undertakes to start producing a certain amount of coal within a specified period of time and to deliver it to TTK at a contractually agreed price. No such contract company is currently in full production.

3.2 Lignite (brown coal)

8.5 billion in secured lignite reserves. t. However, more than 75% of Turkey’s lignite has a calorific value of less than 2.500 kcal/kg and only 10% are above 3.000 kcal/kg (IEA 2001). Most lignite-fired power plants are built in the immediate vicinity of opencast mines (Fig. 6).

Fig. 6. The Afsin-Elbistan opencast mine. // Fig. 6. Afsin-Elbistan open pit mine. Photo/Photo: von Hartlieb

The major lignite producers in Turkey are the state-owned mining company TKI and the state-owned power supply company EuAS. In addition, there are a number of other private mining companies that either conduct mining operations on the basis of their own licenses or act as subcontractors for the state-owned companies.

90 % of lignite extraction is carried out in opencast mines. Discontinuous methods with excavators and truck/truck combinations predominate as mining methods. Draglines are sometimes used to move overburden in larger operations. Elbistan A open pit mine also uses continuous mining methods with bucket wheel excavators, belt conveyor system and spreaders.

Underground lignite mines exist in particular in the regions of Tuncbilek and Soma. Seams with thicknesses of more than 8 m are generally mined there. Mining is predominantly carried out using the longwall top coal caving (LTCC) method, i.e. longwall mining with breaking in of the ridge coal and removal of the roof (Fig. 7). In the case of larger thicknesses, mining is also carried out in several slices.

Fig. 7. LTCC shield support with chain conveyor attached. // Fig. 7 LTCC shield support with chain conveyor attached. Source/source: Caterpillar

Fig. 7. LTCC shield support with chain conveyor attached. // Fig 7. LTCC extension shield with attached chain conveyor. Source/Source: Caterpillar

Even in underground lignite mines, not all operations are fully mechanized. Some of the longwalls are operated with single rams and a mechanized chain conveyor. Other mines use walking frames of Chinese production for expansion in the longwall area and also chain conveyors. In the fully mechanized operations, two technical solutions are used for the roof end haulage. In the case of one of these, the slope end is removed through closable openings in the cap of the excavator. The coal is loaded onto the face conveyor. In the other method, a second conveyor is attached to the support and the coal from the roof is fed via this conveyor to the roadway conveyor.

Other underground lignite mines can be found in the Beypazarı/Cayirhan region. The operations here are predominantly fully mechanized. Since the seams mined tend to be shallow, conventional longwall mining is used, sometimes in two slices, in order to keep larger tailings out of the raw production.

4 Safety

Fig. 8. Coal mining accidents in Turkey (1955 – 2012). // Fig. 8. Mining accidents in the Turkish coal industry (1955 – 2012). Source/Source: Hisham Ashkar 2014

The Soma accident of May 2014 highlights the risks in the Turkish mining industry. According to the International Labor Organization (ILO), miners in Turkey live more dangerously than in other countries. According to ILO data, Turkey has the highest rate of fatal occupational accidents in Europe. Between 2007 and 2012, the number of mining deaths per 1 million was. t of coal mined 4.6 miners, compared with 1.3 in India and 0.2 in the USA. In the coal mining industry, from 1955 to 2012, there were over 3.000 fatal accidents and 326.000 injured (Fig. 8). "Other countries have made mining safer, but Turkey has not," says economist Mustafa Sonmez. In the course of privatization, the trade unions have also been weakened, so that employee representatives are not in a position to enforce stricter safety precautions. Expert partners from abroad are now to address this issue in coordination with government agencies and operators.

4.1 Safety pays off!

Mining companies from Germany, and in particular from North Rhine-Westphalia, can help to raise occupational health and safety standards in Turkey with their know-how and appropriate concepts. This is because every accident, every disaster and an obvious shortage of skilled workers there call into question the desired operational success despite the acquisition of modern machinery and equipment. The Turkish mining industry suffers from insensitive miners and their lack of practical know-how. Safety-related training would therefore be a pragmatic business decision that Turkish mine operators would have to make. Appropriate instruction and bi-national training measures could point the way to the future. DMT GmbH, Essen, is currently in talks with the responsible ministries in Ankara to carry out training and advanced training measures in the field of occupational safety.

As long as the Turkish mining industry does not have operating procedures that can be considered safe, the growth in coal mining that the Turkish government is aiming for is in doubt. Awareness of hazards and knowledge of hazard prevention and control can contribute directly to improving working conditions while increasing production. Turkish miners who are willing to perform must be turned into responsible and prudent underground workers who have knowledge of the equipment, operate and maintain machinery optimally, and react appropriately in the event of an incident.

4.2 Technology center mining can be key to success

Not only in Turkey, but also in many other countries, the lack of basic knowledge and practical know-how often jeopardizes the successful use of new equipment in the mining industry. This also applies in particular to the issue of safety. In this context, the establishment of an institutional and modular training facility would be simple at a manageable cost. For decades, the German mining industry operated a large number of corresponding sites under mining supervision. The establishment of a mining and mechanized training center as an educational facility is a pragmatic business decision that would be made by the operators in consultation with appropriate organizations. A training center – conceivably also operated on a bi-national basis – would not only promote the optimum use of machinery and equipment and sustainably improve safety standards, but could also point the way to the future of vocational training.

Fig. 9. Training roadway at TZB Recklinghausen. // Fig. 9. Training section at the Recklinghausen TZB. Photo/photo: von Hartlieb

Real conditions are determined z. B. simulated in Recklinghausen at the Mining Technology Center (TZB) of RAG Aktiengesellschaft, Herne (Fig. 9). Model calculations are available to demonstrate the economic viability and efficiency of such technical centers. Local partners and service providers can be involved right from the start. Training could be carried out jointly by experts from Germany and Turkey.

The reasons for lack of safety must be localized and defined in advance, z. B. by:

  • Analysis of sector-specific boundary conditions,
  • Definition and elaboration of the specific educational topics and content u. a. to mining and raw material efficiency:

o Creation of a profound safety culture (occupational health and safety with a focus on underground mining),

o Definition and development of specific contributions to international education management and conceptualization/evaluation of business models based on existing experience in North Rhine-Westphalia and

o Active involvement in the implementation of training objectives in the areas of occupational safety, health and environmental protection (OSHEP).

In addition to awareness of AGU, there is a great need for protective equipment and new equipment to subsequently improve the economic performance of the mines on a sustainable basis based on safety management.

5 Export opportunities for mining suppliers

The Turkish government has declared the country’s mining sector a growth area. However, raw material extraction has so far contributed little to the otherwise convincing development of the economy. Only about 2% of Turkey’s gross domestic product comes from mining production. The foreign trade balance is negative in this area. While many countries are shifting energy policies to alternative energy or under smart mining to sustainable environmentally friendly coal use as a bridging technology, Turkey is still taking the historical-classical route. To date, a good 40 % of Turkey’s electricity supply is generated with gas. The Turkish government would like to reduce this share to a maximum of 30% by 2023 and is therefore creating incentives for coal-based projects. In this way, it would like to become less dependent on gas imports from Russia and Iran. Turkey currently obtains three quarters of its energy requirements from abroad (2). In order to increase its own production, processes, investments and schedules must be aligned with government goals in the medium to long term, and corresponding capacities and performance parameters must allow for comprehensible growth.

Turkey is a very interesting market for German manufacturers of machinery and equipment. Turkish and foreign companies are actively investing in the modernization or new construction of production capacities with an eye to the future. German manufacturers are in demand as suppliers and investors. German machinery manufacturers account for more than one-fifth of Turkish machinery imports. They mainly encounter competitors from China, Italy, Japan and the UK in the Turkish market. Italy, for example, is an established supplier for sheet metal working and for food and packaging machinery. China has so far been successful mainly in the low-price segment. Since 2010, China has been able to record continuous growth in the Turkish machinery market. The gap compared with German suppliers is narrowing, not least because Chinese suppliers not only have great financial strength, but are increasingly thinking in terms of systems and alliances. However, local manufacturers will also represent stronger competition in the future. The picture shown here is also reflected in the mining machinery sector.

6 Conclusion

For Germany’s mining suppliers, Turkey is an obvious sales and cooperation market and, due to its geographic location, an important link between Europe’s markets and the oil and gas exporting countries of the Middle East and the Caspian Sea region. Turkey thus plays an important role for Europe’s energy supply. It is considered certain that global energy demand will continue to increase in the future. Turkey’s primary energy consumption is also expected to grow rapidly in the future. Due to Turkey’s increasing energy consumption, it has not been possible to reduce energy imports, so the Turkish government is trying to further diversify energy imports. This can be seen in the growth of alternative energies, in oil and gas pipeline projects, or in negotiations with countries such as Egypt, Turkmenistan or the United Arab Emirates on oil and gas imports. Another strategy Turkey is pursuing to meet its energy needs is the promotion of domestic energy resources. This also applies to financial aid for coal mining. Among primary fossil fuels, however, lignite is by far the most abundant energy resource in Turkey.

Areas that use brown or. include coal mining, are still largely dominated by state-owned companies. The continued opening of the energy market aims to meet Turkey’s growing energy needs. This cannot be achieved through state investment alone, but requires private initiatives from within and outside Germany. Starting with the transfer of know-how in the area of safety and extending to the potential joint design of mechanical engineering processes and equipment, there is a wide field for collaboration.

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