Upon the disagreement between the Undersecretariat of Defense Industries (SSM) and Otokar on the manufacturing terms of Turkey's main battle tank Altay, a new tender process for the undertaker was announced and, according to the reports, six firms are planning to partake in the tender and the SSM is expected to work with around 200 companies for the part, system and subsystem production across the mass production, which would stimulate public discussion on competition environment of the tender.
Therefore, the undersecretariat will adopt a different route from the previous tenders and establish a committee of 80 people who will be influential in the decision-making processes regarding subcontractors, according to the Turkish daily Dünya.
The commission formed under the coordination of the SSM will conduct technical examination on the potential participants and subcontractors. As the reports noted, the commission will determine the proficiency of the firms, which will be part of the tender process.
Previously, in the 2017-2021 Strategic Plan published by the SSM, the primary date for the first Altay Main Battle Tank entering service was set for 2020.
According to the plan, the first 15 tanks will be put into service in 2020, while 20 tanks will be delivered in 2021. However, there has been no confirmation as to whether these dates are still valid, as a new tender is going to be held.
The strategic plan stressed that the Altay Main Battle Tank has been developed through cooperative efforts of key players in the Turkish defense industry and has a national and original design, boasting the world's most advanced technology subsystems.
Turkish-Qatari partnership BMC, which made a deal with German Rheinmetall, Altay's developer Otokar, FNSS, the producer of the first prototype for Indonesia's light-weight tank project, Katmerciler, TÜMOSAN and Nurol Makine announced their interest in participating in the tender for the mass production of Altay.
Altay is a third-generation version of the main battle tank and Turkey's first indigenous tank development program. The tank was named after Army General Fahrettin Altay, who commanded the Fifth Cavalry Corps during the Turkish War of Independence.