Pakistan to become playmaker with Turkey’s ship project: Turkish official

Updated February 27, 2020

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“We do not see Pakistani army separate from our own,” says DG of Military Factory and Shipyard Management Esad Ak­g­un. — AFP/File
“We do not see Pakistani army separate from our own,” says DG of Military Factory and Shipyard Management Esad Ak­g­un. — AFP/File

KARACHI: A Turkish official has praised an agreement between Pakis­tan and Turkey on sale of four corvettes to Pakistan as part of Turkey’s National Ship (Milgem) project.

“Pakistan’s possession of four Milgem corvettes will change the balance in the region and will carry the country to the position of a playmaker,” said Esad Ak­g­un, director general of Military Factory and Ship­yard Manage­ment Inc (Asfat) — a company operating under Turkey’s defence ministry.

“It is very important for us to have Pakistan in this position as we do not see the Pakistani army separate from our own army,” Anadolu Agency quoted Mr Akgun as saying.

According to the report, Mr Akgun visited Pakistan to attend Pakistan-Turkey Business Investment For­um organised by Turkey’s Foreign Economic Rela­tions Board.

In line with the 2018 agreement, Pakistan would buy four Milgem corvettes, two of them would be manufactured in the Istanbul shipyard and the others in Karachi.

“In the first phase, one corvette each to be built in Istanbul and Karachi will participate in the Pakistan Navy inventory in 2023,” Asfat said on its official website.

The other two ships would be inscribed in the inventory in 2024, Asfat added.

Turkey transferred technical information and technology to Pakistan through this agreement, Mr Akgun said.

Published in Dawn, February 27th, 2020