Altay Tank
Altay Tank

On 22 October, the Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu, tweeted that an agreement had been reached with South Korea’s Minister for the Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA), Kang Eun-ho, that two Korean companies would supply the power pack for Turkey’s new indigenous tank, the Altay.

Doosan and S&T Dynamics are the South Korean companies that reports have indicated would supply the engine and gearbox for the Altay, which is being designed and manufactured by BMC.

The development of the Altay has had an ‘on-off’ history. Originally based on the South Korean K2 Black Panther design through a technology transfer agreement, a serial production contract was signed between the Presidency of Defense Industries and BMC on 9 November, 2018. There are around 200 subcontractors involved in the development, most of whom are domestic.

The Altay will mount a 120mm 55 calibre MKEK main gun with other major Turkish defence contractors such as Aselsan and Rocketsan delivering the tank’s subsystems and armour.

Çavuşoğlu said that during the meetings with the South Korean government representatives there had been a wide range of discussions on economic subjects including defence. He stated that South Korea was the “only country in East Asia with which we have a Free Trade Agreement.”

by Andrew Drwiega