Turkish Firm To Produce Armored Vehicles In Kazakhstan
Turkish defense manufacturer Otokar has announced it will start producing its Cobra armored vehicles in Kazakhstan. The deal seems to follow precisely the model that Kazakhstan has been imposing on its foreign military contractor vendors: Kazakhstan will buy their stuff if they set up a local joint venture, manufacture in Kazakhstan, and arrange for Kazakhstan's engineers to eventually be able to produce the product themselves. From Hurriyet:
Under the deal, Otokar will launch a joint venture with NK Kazakhstan Engineering to produce Otokar’s 4x4 Cobra armored vehicles. The number of vehicles and the size of the contract have not yet been announced...
The agreement is a follow-up deal on an earlier contract Otokar won last May to sell scores of vehicles to the Kazakh army....
NK Kazakhstan Engineering has been tasked with building the production facility for the Cobra vehicles, while Otokar will transfer production know-how and deliver all parts and components for production, officials said.
The deal was signed October 12 during a visit by Kazakhstan President Nursultan Nazarbayev to Turkey, and represents the first Turkish armored vehicle to be produced outside that country. The company says that it has already sold 25,000 Cobras to 30 countries around the world, among them Georgia and Azerbaijan.
Joshua Kucera is the Turkey/Caucasus editor at Eurasianet, and author of The Bug Pit.
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