Turkish company Baykar, the manufacturer of the Bayraktar TB2 combat drones, plans to invest around $100 million in three projects in Ukraine, said the company's CEO Haluk Bayraktar at the Defense Industry Forum in Kyiv.
"We have three main investments in Ukraine. One of them is a factory (for drone production). Then we have a service center and also the main office here. This investment amounts to around $100 million, and the process is already underway. Construction has already begun. It will take about one and a half years to complete. We plan for a minimum of 300 people to work here. The cooperation continues," he said.
Bayraktar described the future production as self-sufficient, environmentally friendly, and mutually beneficial. According to the head of Baykar, Ukraine has unique technologies for engine manufacturing, while Turkey has drones for installing these engines.
"We also face some challenges. This includes supply chain, talent acquisition and development due to the impact of the war, and regulatory environment, especially the rules that will support these investments," Bayraktar noted.
He added that Russia's war against Ukraine has become a war of UAVs, expressing his opinion about the specific advantage of Ukrainian military, particularly due to the use of various types of drones, although the latter is challenging to implement. The CEO of the company considers feedback from the military regarding the use of technology particularly important under such conditions. According to him, Bayraktar drones were equipped with a range of unique systems for the Ukrainian Armed Forces.
Haluk Bayraktar emphasized, "We are not here to maximize our income or profit. We are here to provide maximum support to you. We respect your struggle for freedom and independence, for the preservation of sovereignty."
Earlier, the Ukrainian Defense Ministry approved the location with investors for the future center for servicing, repair, and modernization of Baykar's products.