Indonesia vs. Turkey – the different path of growing a geothermal market

Comparing geothermal development in Indonesia vs. Turkey 1983-2018 (source: ThinkGeoEnergy, all rights reserved)
Alexander Richter 3 Jan 2018

Indonesia and Turkey have been in the forefront of geothermal news in recent years, due to the ongoing development and geothermal ambitions. This research by ThinkGeoEnergy compares the development in both countries from 1983 to 2018.

Comparing two countries’ different approach to geothermal development is not an easy task. While Indonesia is generally known as hosting the world’s largest geothermal resource potential, development has lagged behind in comparison to other nations. This is particularly obvious in the case of Turkey. A country blessed with geothermal resources, but far from the incredible resource potential of Indonesia. With predominantly low enthalpy resources, Turkey has been pushing development through supportive regulatory framework and a favourable feed-in-tariff system.

From a power generation capacity of 30 MW in 2008 to 1,100 MW in 2017, Turkey has shown an incredible growth. Interesting enough is that this is done with smaller plant sizes, with an average plant size of around 19 MW of installed geothermal power generation capacity. This is though not the end and more development is in the pipeline.

Indonesia on the other hand has historically been planning with larger scale development and an average plant size of around 49 MW and actually bigger if one disregards some of the smaller plants built in the past. While development has seen ups and downs, it has only recently seen an upswing with larger development such as the one of Sarulla and new development by Pertamina Geothermal Energy and private sector players.

The above chart gives an overview on the capacity added by year in the period of 1983 to 2017, with an outlook for planned additions in 2018 in both countries.

This is part of an ongoing research of ThinkGeoEnergy into the Indonesian and Turkish geothermal markets. We are working on a comprehensive report on Indonesia’s geothermal market that we are planning to publish in the first half of 2018.

ThinkGeoEnergy research associate, Dwina Soerono, is working on this and might be in touch with market players in the region over the coming weeks. If you want to get in touch with her on thoughts, ideas or tips, please contact her via her email at