SHAH ALAM: Dr M Visits Turkish Aerospace. As part of his four day official visit to Turkey, Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad visited Turkish Aerospace (TAI), country’s main aerospace and defence company. During the visit to TAI’s facility in Ankara, Dr Mahathir and delegation were given a presentation of its products.
And its not just a presentation but a flyby which included the TAI Hurkus turboprop trainer and the ATAK attack helicopter.
The Hurkus trainer prototype and the ATAK helicopter performing the flypast for Dr M and delegation. TAI
It is likely also other TAI aircraft including the Anka UAV and the Gokbey utility helicopter took part in the flypast. The Anka as you are aware is one of the UAV competing for an order for a RMAF requirement, which had been approved and set for funding in next RMK.
Dr Mahathir is presented a drawing of the Anka during his visit to TAI. TAI
As the government had already announced that all future contracts will decided via open competition, the Anka will have to show its worth once the tender is open. However, as defence contracts are ultimately decided by the politicians, one must say that Anka is having its day in the sun. Whether it will survive the scrutiny in the next three or four years, is beyond me.
Gokbey helicopter prototype. TAI
It is unclear whether Dr Mahathir and his delegation is visiting the FNSS factory as part of the visit though. FNSS as you are aware is the partner of DRB Hicom’s subsidiary, Deftech, which is the main contractor for the Gempita 8X8.
On the Way. Gempita Mortar carrier firing a 120mm round. 12th RMR
As for the other products of TAI, the Army still has the requirement for attack and utility helicopers. The ATAK is already in production and in service with the Turkish military. The first Gokbey prototype only flew recently so it is unlikely to be offered for the RMN maritime helicopter programme.
TAI Future Fighter. TAI
Turkish shipyards or their local partners could also be involved in the RMN FIC tender though admittedly I have no idea who they are. As for the future, the TAI future fighter could also even be in the mix for the MRCA programme.
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