(Adds comment from sources)
ISTANBUL, Aug 19 (Reuters) - Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan told an energy-related event on Wednesday that he would be announcing “good news” this Friday that will open a “new period” in Turkey, helping the lira back from a record low and driving up energy shares.
While Erdogan did not elaborate, a source said his statement was related to Turkey’s discovery of energy resources in two separate locations in the Black Sea, one of which was of a significant size.
Two sources said initial work in the Mediterranean Sea was also yielding positive signals.
Turkey has been exploring and drilling for energy resources in parts of the Black Sea region and eastern Mediterranean, believed to be rich in oil and natural gas.
Its operations have led to a dispute with NATO ally Greece over overlapping claims in the Mediterranean, where two Turkish survey vessels are in areas claimed by Greece, Cyprus and Turkey.
Erdogan said at the opening of a solar power plant in Ankara on Wednesday that no threats can deter Turkey from seeking natural resources in the eastern Mediterranean.
Shortly afterwards the president, without providing details, made his comment about a “good news” announcement, which Finance Minister Berat Albayrak said would be “an axis shift” for Turkey.
“We are imagining, dreaming of this good news right now. I believe as of now that by giving this good news to our people on Friday, God willing a new period will be opened in Turkey,” Erdogan said.
“If I announce it now, the excitement and all will be lost.”
Energy Minister Fatih Donmez, asked about the “good news” on Wednesday, told reporters he was “also waiting with curiosity”.
Shares in Turkey’s Tupras refiner were up 7.58% and shares in petrochemicals company Petkim rose 9.87% following Erdogan’s comments.
The Turkish lira, which has hit a series of record lows against the U.S. dollar in recent days, firmed more than 2% to as much as 7.22. The main share index rose 2.95%. (Additional reporting by Ali Kucukgocmen and Nevzat Devranoglu; Editing by Dominic Evans, Grant McCool and Jan Harvey)
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