Turkey's Undersecretariat for Defense Industries (SSM) has agreed to accept an improved Rolls Royce bid for the TF-X engine.
The British giant's previous bid for Turkey's national fighter jet project fell short in terms of technology sharing, co-production, export licenses, sharing of intellectual property rights and development costs.
Meanwhile, the SSM has reportedly started working with a newly established domestic company, TR Motor, to design and manufacture fighter jet engine.
Rolls Royce recently placed a bid through TAEC, a joint venture with by Turkey's Kale Group.
Turkey and the U.K. signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) during President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's visit to the U.K. on May 13-15.
Undersecretary of Defense Industries İsmail Demir and British Minister for Defense Procurement Guto Aberconwy signed the agreement. It stipulates that the result of the Rolls Royce bid will be finalized by July 31. The next two months will be critically important for the TF-X project as it will determine whether Rolls Royce will be a part of the project or not. During British Prime Minister Theresa May's visit to Turkey last year, Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI) and British defense giant BAE Systems signed a contract to begin the Turkish National Combat Aircraft Development Project (TF-X) and further improve cooperation in the defense industry.
TAI has already revealed some details of the TF-X. The twin-engine fighter jet will feature engines that can generate up to 20,000 pounds of thrust. The jet will also be able to reach an altitude of 55,000 feet and will have a range of around 600 miles.
The jet's preliminary design program received a TL 4.8 billion ($1.16 billion) incentive certificate under the Turkish government's incentive program.
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