``We Believe that Türkiye Has Good Production Capability to Reconstruct or Rebuild the Ukrainian Navy! ``

Cooperating with the Geneva Center for Security Policy (GCSP), the Center for Economics and Foreign Policy Studies (EDAM) organized a two-day advanced research workshop (ARW) titled “Emerging Disruptive Technologies (EDTs) in Defense: Lessons from Ukraine” in Istanbul, Türkiye. Supported by NATO Science for Peace and Security (SPS) Program, the event was held in person on October 27-28, 2023 at the Radisson Blu Bosphorus Hotel located in Ortaköy, Istanbul. The event brought together a group of 35 distinguished experts and researchers from politics, industry, media (including Defence Turkey Magazine), civil society, academia and think tanks. On October 28, prior to the Panel IV ‘Titled Türkiye’s Way: Turkish Unmanned Systems Portfolio and AI Strategy” Defence Turkey created an opportunity to have an exclusive interview with Vasyl BODNAR, Ambassador of Ukraine to Türkiye to get first-hand information on the on Türkiye’s contribution to Ukraine in their war against the Russian invasion and the current status of defense industrial cooperation between Ukraine and Türkiye.

Date: Issue 127 - December 2023

Defence Turkey: Ambassador, thank you for sparing your time. Can I get your comments on Türkiye’s contribution to the war against the Russian invasion. What kind of support are you getting from the Turkish Government and Turkish Defense Industry companies? 

Vasyl BODNAR: I would say in a different manner that we are good partners. We are strategic partners, and we developed our cooperation far before the war. So, we have these supplementary ways of cooperation. When we supply something, Türkiye supplies something else and we gain together. Before the war you know that we have good supplies of BAYRAKTAR TB2s, and they became already veterans of our wars. But we are also let’s not staying back, we're also supplying engines to Türkiye. Well-known AKINCI, KIZILELMA UCAVs and Turkish Heavy Attack Helicopter ATAK-II and respective UCAV like ANKA-III, they all might use Ukrainian engines and some of them already using Ukrainian engines. So, we are also cooperating on establishing a factory in Ukraine. Baykar Makina already announced that they are working on that, and they established a number of companies and we have just recently at the end of September we had a forum which was called the Defense Industry Forum. Nine Turkish companies participated in that, very prominent companies. Also, Baykar announced that they have invested 100 million Dollars into the Ukrainian economy and it’s a very profitable story. So now we are inviting Turkish companies also to start working in the Ukrainian market directly opening their branches. Some companies already have some and a majority of them, just let’s say, do not publicly announcing everything, but be sure that we are good partners. We are supplying each other. We have no political preconditions and the future belongs to us. We will be together much stronger, and we could work in such a tandem which will be creating a stability and security in the region of the Black Sea on the basis of our national interests, which actually remain the same. Our common security defense of our countries and also Atlantic integration. So, we are also asking for NATO.