(AFP) – Jul 29, 2008
SEOUL (AFP) — South Korea said it has signed a 400-million-dollar contract to help Turkey develop a new tank, in what will be the first time Seoul has exported tanks or related technology.
Under the deal signed in Ankara on Tuesday, South Korea will help Turkey develop its new main battle tank by 2015, the Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) said in a press statement.
"The Turkish government has recognised our rich experience and advanced technology in developing battle tanks," DAPA said. "It also demonstrates the superiority of our defence technology."
The deal includes technology transfer worth 330 million dollars and the production of four prototypes worth 70 million dollars, Hyundai Rotem said.
When development is completed, Turkey reportedly plans to produce some 200 of the tanks.
"This project is a new landmark in the two countries' cooperation in defence technology," Defence Minister Lee Sang-Hee was quoted as saying by Yonhap news agency.
Turkey is one of the largest customers of South Korean defence products.
State-funded Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI) last year signed a 500-million-dollar contract to deliver 55 KT-1 trainers to Turkey's air force by 2013.
Yonhap said Turkey also wants to buy some 100 million dollars worth of weapons, including 155mm self-propelled artillery, from South Korea this year.
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