ANKARA, Turkey – Turkey and its coastal neighbor on the Black Sea, Ukraine, have signed an agreement to expand their cooperation in the field of space and satellite technologies.
SSB President and Turkey’s Procurement Senior Officer Ismail Demir and Turkey’s Industry and Technology Minister Mustafa Varank met with Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal on November 30 to discuss space and defense cooperation between the two countries .
Serdar Huseyin Yildirim, head of Turkey’s space agency, announced the agreement on December 4, which includes collaboration on technology launch, satellite production, marketing and subsystem production, and a program to manufacture a joint rocket launcher.
The Turkish Space Agency is responsible for the civilian applications of the Turkish-Ukrainian space effort, while the Turkish Presidency for Defense Industries (SSB) manages the military aspect of programs.
Yildirim said Turkey is in talks with nearly 20 countries for space cooperation, including Russia, Japan, Pakistan, India and Azerbaijan. He said Russia recently proposed a draft space agreement that the Turkish authorities are currently working on. Officials say the proposed deal would be sealed soon.
Although Ukraine and Russia are at odds over annexing Crimea in 2014, Turkey is confident it can work with both nations, Yildirim said, noting that “the US and Russia are rivals in different areas but are working together in space “.