Minister Varank attended the Precision Guidance Kit-82 Delivery Ceremony


Minister Varank attended the Precision Guidance Kit-82 (HGK-82) Delivery Ceremony held at the Etimesgut 3rd Air Maintenance Factory with the participation of Minister of National Defense Hulusi Akar and TÜBİTAK President Hasan Mandal.

In his speech here, Varank said that the HGK-82s were developed by the TÜBİTAK Defense Industry Research and Development Institute (SAGE). Informing that these kits turn general purpose bombs into smart ammunition that can operate in all weather conditions day and night with their guidance technology, Varank reminded that the first deliveries of HGK-82s were made in partnership with TÜBİTAK SAGE and ASELSAN. Varank said, “The HGK-82s, which we have delivered today, are the first batch completed within the scope of the kit production project of 1000 pieces in total carried out in partnership with ASFAT-TÜBİTAK. Hopefully, all of them will be delivered by August 2022.” he said.

Noting that, unlike previous deliveries, Kaşif, the buyer of the local and national global positioning system, has been integrated into this project, Varank made the following assessment:

“Domestic and national Explorer buyers were used in the delivered kits. It is a very important development that eliminates foreign dependency. In addition, providing our 3rd Air Maintenance Factory Directorate with HGK production capability is another important issue that should be emphasized.”

“We turned the embargo in our favor”

Pointing out that the political independence of the countries has passed from the independence in the defense industry, Varank stated that they neutralized the secret and open embargoes against Turkey in this field with domestic and national production.

Reminding that there is an embargo for the cameras used in Turkey’s SİHAs, Varank said, “However, did this intimidate us? We managed to turn this to our advantage. We produced the products they did not provide locally, we have now started to use these cameras in our SİHAs. We also get very good feedback from our soldiers. ” he used his words.

Noting that under the leadership of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Turkey is a defense industry with a domestic rate of over 70 percent, a turnover of 10 billion dollars and exports exceeding 3 billion dollars, Varank said:

“We have made great strides in land, air and sea systems. We continue on our way at full speed with projects such as Hürkuş, MİLGEM, MİLDAR. Our UAVs are at the forefront of the world’s agenda and in the headlines of the newspapers. I hope that when we produce our combat UAVs, the world’s F-35s “The production of our TCG Anadolu ship continues at the moment. Hopefully, we will be able to land and lift our fixed-wing UAVs at TCG Anadolu. When we achieve this, we will be the only country in the world that can do this. I hope we want to achieve much greater success.” Because we set our sights high with the vision of the National Technology Move drawn by our President.”

“We are working to strengthen our technological competence”

Emphasizing that they have determined the defense industry as one of the focus areas in the 2023 Industry and Technology Strategy, which they prepared in the light of the National Technology Move, Varank explained that they are working non-stop in public-university-private sector cooperation to clinch technological competence in this field.

Stating that they increased the contribution to the defense industry day by day with support programs, infrastructures and research institutes, Varank said:

“TUBITAK SAGE, one of the architects of today’s delivery, is one of our institutions that started the national smart ammunition and national missile revolution of our country with its capacity and capabilities. TÜBİTAK SAGE brought Turkey’s first bunker-piercing bombs and our first national cruise missile to the inventory of our Air Force. In this way, our aircraft can point to their target from a distance of 250 kilometers. “We continue to work on Bozdoğan and Gökdoğan, Turkey’s first national air-to-air missiles that will increase our army’s air dominance. Of course, we also attach special importance to the localization of the subsystems of these munitions. The Global Positioning System integrated into the HGK-82s delivered today.” “Our receiver, Kaşif, is one of them. It is very important that we nationalize them. We have to bring them to a level that can compete in the world. We will gain another important capability with the use of Atlas, our Inertial Measurement Unit developed by TÜBİTAK SAGE, in national munitions.”

Varank stated that besides SAGE in the defense industry, they also carry out important studies at TÜBİTAK Informatics and Information Security Advanced Technologies Research Center (BİLGEM) and TÜBİTAK Marmara Research Center (MAM).

“Thanks to our support, the project pool is expanding”

Drawing attention to the importance of competitiveness in the defense industry, Varank said, “The way to increase competitiveness is through public-private sector cooperation. At this point, organized industrial zones and industrial zones established with the support of our Ministry have a great importance. For example, Kırıkkale Arms Industry Specialized OSB, Ankara Space and Aviation Specialized OIZ and Konya Technology Industrial Zone are the projects that will fill important gaps for our defense industry. Clusters in these regions will perform an important task especially in reducing costs and increasing efficiency.” made its assessment.

Varank stated that in addition to the infrastructure creation function, they also provided various supports to defense industry projects, and used the following statements:

“In the last 19 years, we have provided 5.6 billion liras of support to approximately 1000 projects in the field of defense only through TUBITAK. Again, our contribution to defense industry enterprises in the last 3 years through KOSGEB has exceeded 65 million liras. 41 R&D centers operating in this field, 5.1 billion liras. Thanks to all these supports, the project pool in this area is gradually expanding and each project triggers the other. The products coming out of the projects increase the domestic rate in the defense industry on the one hand, and contribute to employment and exports on the other. In this context, the high-tech products we have caught recently The increase in production confirms this.”

Emphasizing that homeland defense is a whole with land, air, sea, cyber world and space, Varank said that Turkey’s soft power is the most important part of its deterrence as well as its wrist power.

In this context, Varank stated that they have taken steps to strengthen the power of the Turkish defense industry in coordination with all institutions.

“MKEK will act much faster”

Referring to the planned change in the structure of the Machinery and Chemical Industry Corporation (MKEK), Varank said:

“Unfortunately, the opposition is carrying out a very dirty disinformation saying that ‘MKEK is being privatized’. We are sad to follow that some unions have played this trick. We need to underline one thing in particular. According to the bill to be discussed in the parliament, MKEK will not be privatized, on the contrary, it will continue to protect its public identity by law. It will turn into a public joint stock company subject to the provisions of private law in the Treasury, whose management, rights and authorities are under the Ministry of National Defense. The rights of its employees will be protected until the end. Despite many structural problems, MKEK has made great strides in recent years. As a public company, it will become a more efficient and much more competitive company. “It will both strengthen the strength of the Turkish Armed Forces and contribute greatly to our exports. Just as there are companies that can act much faster, such as ASELSAN, ROKETSAN, HAVELSAN, MKEK will become one of them.”

Noting that the logic of the private sector should be brought to institutions in order to be competitive in the transforming world, Varank added that he believes the transformation that MKEK will experience will also be beneficial.