ANKARA (Reuters) - Turkey has the ability to build a planned long-range missile system domestically, the defense industry undersecretary said on Friday, adding he did not rule out the possibility of working with companies that had previously submitted bids in a tender.
“We could produce the long-range missile system locally. We could also evaluate opportunities for cooperation including those who submitted bids in the tender,” Ismail Demir told broadcaster NTV.
Turkey last year canceled the $3.4-billion tender to develop the missile system that had been provisionally awarded to China, after the award stirred the concern of Ankara’s NATO allies.
Other bidders in the tender included U.S. firm Raytheon and Franco-Italian group Eurosam, owned by the multinational European missile maker MBDA and France’s Thales.
Reporting by Orhan Coskun and Can Sezer; Writing by David Dolan; Editing by Daren Butler