Erdogan: Defense exports will exceed $4 billion by end of year
Over the last two decades Ankara has greatly increased the size of the budget for defense projects, especially in the field of armed drones
By News Desk - December 12 2022

(Photo Credit: Baykar Defense)

On 12 December, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that they have raised the budget of defense projects from nearly $5.5 billion to more than $75 billion and about 1,600 Turkish companies work in the defense industry.

Speaking at the InovaLIG Champions, Türkiye Innovations Week awards ceremony in Istanbul, Erdogan addressed the audience saying, “While there were 56 companies operating in the defense industry twenty years ago, today we have more than 1,600 companies in the same area. We could reach $248 million in exports in the defense industry. I am confident that hopefully we will exceed $4 billion this year.”

The Turkish Head of State also emphasized that his administration has turned Turkiye into a country that sells advanced technology products to it’s NATO allies.

“We are among the top 3-4 countries in the world in the design, production and sale of unmanned aerial vehicles.. We have completely reversed the picture by working patiently, producing and not giving up in the face of difficulties, public-private, all together, in an area where we were 70-80% foreign-dependent 20 years ago,” he said.

Erdogan also highlighted that they began a new era in the energy field with the discovery of 540 billion cubic meters of natural gas in the Black Sea on their own seismic research and drilling vessels.

“We can conduct oil and gas exploration activities outside of Turkiye. While our efforts to include Black Sea gas in our national system continue, good news about oil has recently come from various provinces. Next year, we intend to increase our domestic oil production to 100,000 barrels per day.”

Russian President Vladimir Putin said in October that choosing Turkiye as a hub for Russian gas is understandable and clear.

“I believe it is clear why we are proposing establishing a hub to ship gas from Turkiye to Europe, because it is complicated to work directly with European partners. Working with Turkiye is easier for us. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is a man who keeps his promise,” Putin said.

He expressed his confidence that if a natural gas center is founded in Turkiye, there will be many European customers of Russian gas, adding: “Let’s see what happens this winter and the next. But I am sure that we will sign new gas export contracts.”

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