ANKARA May 30 Atomstroyexport, the main contractor chosen by Russia's Rosatom to build Turkey's first nuclear plant, is planning to hold engineering procurement and construction tenders for the $20 billion power plant in September, an industry source familiar with the project said.
Construction of the 4,800 megawatt (MW) four power unit plant will begin in mid-2015 with production of electricity expected to start in 2019.
Spanish oil engineering firm Tecnicas Reunidas and Turkey's Tekfen Insaat were among the companies which attended a preliminary meeting at site of the plant in Akkuyu, southern Turkey, the source said.
The source did not know how much the tenders would be worth, but estimated the cost of building the plant at $7.5 billion to $8 billion.
The source said other foreign companies were also interested in the tenders but were awaiting government approval of an environmental impact assessment paper, required before construction can start.
Atomstroyexport was not immediately available to comment.
The project is part of Turkey's plans to build a number of nuclear power plants to help to meet growing energy demand and also to reduce dependence on imported oil and gas.
The country earlier this month awarded a $22 billion deal to a Japanese-French consortium to build a second nuclear power plant at Sinop on the Black Sea coast.
(Reporting by Orhan Coskun, Writing by Humeyra Pamuk, Editing by Jane Merriman)