"By September to October, the vessel will start its operations on the open seas," Yildiz said during a ceremony marking the start of drilling operations in the Black Sea by a joint venture between Turkish Petroleum, TPAO, and Royal Dutch Shell.
For this project another vessel - Globetrotter II - passed through the Bosporus strait on Tuesday en route to the Black Sea where it will start drilling for oil in the coming weeks.
During the ceremony held at Ciragan palace in Istanbul, the partners in the $300 million project said if the drilling is successful, it could materially increase Turkey's domestic oil and gas production.
"We want to get see a return for the $300 million investment that we will spend for exploration in the Black Sea. We will spend this money because we believe there is oil there," Yildiz said.
However, the partners stressed that no concrete reserves had been found yet, and they urged transparency with the public on such a challenging project that will require perseverence to realize its aims.
"We couldn't reach the intended results in explorations with BP, Exxon or Petrobras. This time we are hopeful to find hydrocarbons. If there is oil, we will find it," he asserted.
During 2014, 45 oil companies made 220 drillings in offshore and onshore Turkey, covering an area of 301 thousand square kilometers. As a result of these drillings, 188 wells were opened with a 33 percent accuracy ratio.
"From these operations, Turkish Petroleum imported $1.9 billion less oil and natural gas in 2014," Yildiz said.
"Natural gas, oil and coal will still remain a main energy source of the world," the minister said, and added that Turkish Petroleum will continue to work with national and international companies for such exploration.
Turkish Petroleum Deputy General Director Besim Sisman said that despite the fall in oil prices, the country still needs 700 thousand barrels of oil per day regardless of the cost, and therefore, the country needs to run explorations independent of oil prices.
"Our oil revenues decreased by half as oil prices dropped. We took some precautions by concentrating on projects in Turkey. We suspended some of our operations abroad but we didn't cancel them. We will continue our operations after the oil prices recover again," Sisman said.
"The Black Sea is a very big area so it is not possible to find reserves with just a few drillings," Sisman said.
According to Sisman, the North Sea has become a reserve after 30 to 35 drillings and the oil business is all about patience.
"We couldn't find concrete reserves yet, but we found indications of oil and gas in every drilling," he added.
Ahmet Erdem, Turkey Country President of Shell said that Turkey should continue its oil exploration projects despite low oil prices.
"Turkey's benefits from low oil prices doesn't change the reality that Turkey still has to pay huge amounts for oil imports," he added.
When asked if lower oil prices could work against the Black Sea project, the head of the project said Shell has a long-term vision that is not directly affected by changes in the oil market over one or two years.
Joris Grimbergen, Shell Upstream Turkey General Manager added that these kind of projects "requires patience, persistence in studying data and needs careful allocation of investment capital.”