ISTANBUL - Doğan News Agency
Koç Holding’s Otokar has completed a seven-year prototype development process and will commence the mass production of 250 Altay main battle tanks as soon as it receives approval from Turkish authorities, according to a top company representative.
“We completed the prototype development process in seven years in accordance with the vision of both the government and the Defense Ministry to meet their tank needs through domestic means. Otokar made the offer to start mass production. We are been waiting for approval and directives from the government, ministry and the Turkish Armed Forces,” said Koç Holding Vice Chair and Otokar Chair Ali Koç on Nov. 9.
Koç said the company completed all infrastructure planning and programming for mass production.
“As soon as we take a go, we will be able to start mass production in the following 18-22 months,” he said in a MÜSİAD press meeting at the High Tech Port in Istanbul.
Meanwhile, Turkey’s undersecretary for defense industries, İsmail Demir, told a news conference in Ankara
that Turkey was in the final stages of evaluating a renewed offer from Otokar for its Altay tank project on Nov. 8.
Koç said the cancelation of the tender would extend the delivery of a domestic tank to the authorities by three or five years.
He also said the company had created a highly competitive tank both in quality and pricing in comparison to its counterparts.
“Otokar makes exports to 30 countries and works with 50 different entities … Our company has become known for making tanks,” added Koç.