Two Turkish vehicle manufacturers, Otokar and Nurol Makina, inked a contract with Estonia on Wednesday for the supply of 230 armored vehicles worth around 200 million euros (around $211 million).
A contract signing ceremony for the 230 4X4 and 6X6 vehicles to be delivered to Estonian security forces by the Estonian Centre for Defence Investments (ECDI) was held in Tallinn, the capital of Estonia.
“Additionally, four-wheeled armored vehicles have been purchased for the Explosive Ordnance Disposal Centre of the Estonian Rescue Board. These armored vehicles are intended to safeguard members of the Defence Forces in combat situations, ensuring their rapid and secure deployment on the battlefield,” according to a statement from the ECDI.
During the ceremony, Turkish National Defense Minister Yaşar Güler and his Estonian counterpart Hanno Pevkur signed a letter of intent, and Haluk Görgün, head of Presidency of Defense Industries (SSB) and Magnus Valdemar Saar, director general of the ECDI signed a protocol for cooperation in the two countries’ defense industries.
Later, contracts were signed between ECDI and Otokar for the supply of ARMA 6X6 armored combat vehicles, and NurolMakina for the supply of NMS (YORUK) 4X4 armored combat vehicles. Otokar Deputy General Manager Sedef Vehbi and Engin Aykol, Nurol Makina’s CEO signed the contracts.
Noting that with the ARMA 6X6, they have become the supplier of an important European country and increased their market diversity, Vehbi said during his interview with Anadolu Agency (AA) that they have been working on the project since 2020.
“The country had a professional approach. There was a fair competitive environment. We came to the forefront with both our technical features and commercial conditions, and most importantly, we were ahead of our European competitors,” he said.
Stressing that one of the biggest reasons for the success they have achieved with the ARMA 6X6 is due to its success in the battlefield, Vehbi said that the ARMA 6X6 has already been chosen by five militaries for addition into their inventories.
Speaking at the event, Güler said the signed letter of intent would strengthen the two countries’ excellent relations and allow the defense industry and companies to collaborate more.
Noting that the two countries have very good relations based on mutual respect, Güler said the 100th anniversary of bilateral relations will be celebrated in 2024.
“Relationsin the defense industry will bring the two countries closer,” the minister said, adding “The products of Turkish companies will further strengthen the Estonian army and contribute to regional security. The memorandum of intent will further develop good relations.”
For his part, Estonian Defense Minister Pevkur said that following the Ukraine-Russia war, Estonia realized it did not have much time to strengthen its defense sector.
“I am very pleased to sign this letter of intent, which will further our cooperation in the defense industry,” Pevkur said.
He also added that NATO is a great military power and the latest developments in Ukraine and Israel have reaffirmed the importance of ties with this power.