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Azerbaijan can be producer of Turkish-made military aircraft

21 February 2024 19:45 (UTC+04:00)
Azerbaijan can be producer of Turkish-made military aircraft
Qabil Ashirov
Qabil Ashirov
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Azerbaijan continues to enhance its military power and diversify its exports through the defence industry. In this regard, Baku has cooperated with several countries, such as Israel, Bulgaria, Turkiye, South Africa, and so on. In his speeches, President Ilham Aliyev repeatedly emphasised the importance he attaches to this sector. In his last visit to Turkiye, the President heralded that Azerbaijan will broaden its achievements in the defence industry.

The President pointed out that new opportunities emerged, discussions have been held in this regard, and there are concrete plans for joint production with Turkiye. However, he did not clarify what specific products the joint production covers.

In a comment to Azernews on the issue, Turkish Reserve General Yucel Karauz noted that there is a broad field in the defence sector in which Azerbaijan and Turkiye can cooperate and conduct joint production. The Turkish General pointed out that Azerbaijan can conduct joint production with private and state companies, which will be more economical and profitable. He exemplified the UAVs and UCAVs produced by Bayraktar Makina and TAI, communications tools produced by ASELSAN, surface-to-air and air-to-surface missiles produced by ROKETSAN, wheeled and tracked armoured vehicles, and research and development activities in the fields of mine clearance.

“Turkish ASELSAN has already had a facility in Azerbaijan for 15 years, and ROKETSAN is constructing a plant in Baku. Besides, Baykar Makina and ASELSAN are making preparations in this regard as well. In addition to these factories, studies are ongoing on the joint production of the Kaan National Combat Aircraft, the production of some parts of it in Azerbaijan, and the production of some parts of the Kızılelma plane in Azerbaijan. It has been considered set up, both for the production of all factory systems and the production of certain parts of certain products in Azerbaijan. Now, even the USA does not produce the entire product. For example, the parts of the F35 are manufactured in approximately 20-25 countries and assembled in the USA. In other words, there is no need to make all of a product in one country,” the general noted.

As for the importance of this partnership for the region, the General emphasised that it will provide the modernization of old Russian weapon systems in the former Soviet Union countries. Besides, the Turkic states, which President İlham Aliyev and President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan have referred to as a family, use common defence industry products of the 300 million-strong Turkic world and carry out R&D activities together, preventing the repetition of some already known works and thus reducing R&D costs. It will make Azerbaijan not only a country purchasing defence industry products but also increase the export of more technological and sophisticated defence industry products. The general pointed out that, at the same time, it will make Azerbaijan a centre in the defence industry of all of Central Asia and the Caucasus. This is a very important opportunity. The activities, together with the Shusha declaration made by Turkiye and Azerbaijan, can bring courage to these countries, especially Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan, and, as I mentioned earlier, the supply and integration of these manufactured defence products to other Turkic states and Hungary can be ensured. Later, these products can be exported to other countries around the world.

“In the past, wars were fought with the strength of muscles. Whoever shot the arrow well and used the sword well won wars. Afterward, horses entered the scene, and those who had good and many horses won wars. Then, with the invention of firearms, tanks, and cannons, those who had more bullets, gunfire, and logistics won wars. Currently, states that have a good defence industry, have low foreign dependency, are smart, and invest in modern systems are winning wars. Therefore, these activities carried out in the defence industry will provide profit to every country within the framework of the win-win formula. At the same time, it will become a country that can put its fist on the table with its modernity and independence, and speak out in terms of conventional and electronic warfare as well as its soft power. This also enables the transition to the Turkish army model that President Ilham Aliyev expressed in his speech and provides a strong army. Because a strong army means a strong state, if you have a strong state, you will live independently forever,” Y. Karauz underlined.


Qabil Ashirov is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @g_Ashirov

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