Turkey's defense industry growing stronger

Erdoğan's dream that Turkey will make all its own military equipment within a few years reflects his ambition to play a greater role in a turbulent region and achieve independence from long-time allies in the west.

One of Ankara's main goals is to completely rid its defense industry of foreign dependency by 2023.

Turkey spends around 18 billion dollars a year on defense with just over half of its equipment made domestically in 2017.

Defense exports rose 18 percent last year to 1.65 billion dollars, and a tank and infantry rifle are nearly ready for mass production.

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