Turkey will discuss the procurement of an anti-missile system with France and Italy during a NATO ministerial meeting scheduled for November 8 and 9 in Brussels.
Ankara had reached an initial understanding with a French-Italian consortium, Eurosam on July 14, 2017 to develop Turkey’s national defense systems. It had been agreed then that both sides would sign an agreement for an 18-month long study to determine the needs and priorities for the potential joint production of an anti-ballistic missile system.
The ministerial meeting is expected to decide on the details of the agreement to undertake the 18 month study. The target is to launch the project by 2019.
The Turkey-Eurosam project is for the former to manufacture the system in Turkey with technology from the French-Italian consortium.
Turkey has paid an advance for the estimated US$2 billion procurement of the Russian S-400 system which had converted parts of the Syrian airspace into a no-fly zone. Turkish officials have indicated that the S-400 would be an outright purchase with no transfer of technology.
The S-400 is intended to help protect Turkey’s skies in the immediate future while the project with Eurosam is meant to help Ankara build its own system.