Turkey has launched the building phase of its amphibious landing platform dock (LPD) warship for the Turkish Naval Forces with a ceremony on April 30, says Hurriyet.
Last year, the Turkish government announced it signed a nearly $ 1 billion deal with a local shipyard to produce the country's first LPD.
Turkey's procurement agency, the Undersecretariat for Defense Industries (SSM), said SSM and Sedef, a Turkish shipyard, agreed to pen the deal after contract negotiations.
Turkish companies, including Aselsan and Havelsan, will produce and install several parts of the ship’s components, including armaments, electronics and communications systems.
A Spanish company, Navantia, will help in designing the ship.
The 231-meter-long ship will be capable of carrying over 1,000 personnel and transporting helicopters, army vehicles and equipment.
The new craft will be the biggest landing dock in the naval forces’ inventory and also have a hospital.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said: Turkey’s defense industry needs to be 100 percent self-sufficient at a time of increased threats. Our goal is to be totally self-sufficient by 2023."