Turkey is in talks with France to procure new missile system after disagreements emerged with China on the issues of joint production and technology transfer over the defense system, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan was reported as sayingon Sunday.
“Some disagreements have emerged with China on the issues of joint production and technology transfer during negotiations over missile defense system,” Erdogan said, as he returned from the Nato summit in Wales. “Talks are continuing despite that, but France which is second on the list has come up with a new offer. Right now we are holding ongoing talks with France."
Last September, Turkey reached a deal with China Precision Machinery Export-Import Corporation (CPMIEC) to buy its first long-range anti-missile system, but the contract has sparked concerns in Washington.
CPMIEC beat competitors Russia’s Rosoboronexport, Italian-French consortium Eurosam and a US partners Raytheon and Lockheed Martin for the deal, estimated at $4 billion (2.9 billion euros).
The Chinese group, which makes the HQ-9 missile system, is under US sanctions for selling arms and missile technology to Iran and Syria.
The Turkish move also irritated its allies in NATO, which has said missile systems within the transatlantic military alliance must be compatible with each other.