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    Turkey seeks independent defense production: Erdogan

    Turkey plans to eliminate external dependency in defense equipments by 2023

    Baku. 5 May. REPORT.AZ/ Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Tuesday that Turkey seeks to cooperate with other countries in the defense industry, rather than selling products to them.

    "Our plan is to completely eliminate external dependency on defense equipment supply with ongoing projects and investments until 2023. Our next target in defense industry will be unique design,” Erdogan said.

    Report informs referring the information given by theAnadoilu Agency, speaking at the 12th International Defense Industry Fair in Istanbul under the responsibility of the Turkish Armed Forces Foundation, Erdogan said: “There are two Turkish companies which have made their way into a list of the world’s top 100 defense giants."

    Erdogan also added: "Today, we meet 54 percent of our defense industry's needs with our own capabilities."

    He said the Turkish defense industry’s production potential surpassed $5 billion.

    "To be always prepared for security is an obligation as long as assailants are in the world," said Erdogan.

    Erdogan said Turkey wants to reach a Gross National Product of $2 trillion by 2023, which is now $800 billion.

    The 12th International Defense Industry Fair opened its door to visitors on Tuesday and will operate until May 8.

    The fair, which has been held every other year since 1993, is expected to bring together more than 400 companies from 32 countries. It is held under the auspices of the Ministry of National Defense, under the responsibility of the Turkish Armed Forces Foundation.

    Turkish defense producers aim at boosting exports to $25 billion by 2023 from $1.6 billion last year, according to Turkey’s Undersecretary for Defense Industries.

    The top export items were aircraft, helicopter parts, engines, armored-land vehicles, speed boats, missiles, rockets, launching platforms, light weapons and electronic systems, including transmitters, simulators, sensors and software.

    Ankara spent over $1 billion on defense, research and development in 2014.

    Turkey’s defense spending was 29.4 billion Turkish liras, or $13.2 billion, this year, according to the Turkish Defense Ministry.

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