UNITED24 - Make a charitable donation in support of Ukraine!


T-Loramids Long-Range Air-and Missile-Defence System - Background

The Turkish Air Force Long-Range Air-and Missile-Defence System (T-LORAMIDS) competition attracted bids from a US partnership of Raytheon and Lockheed Martin, offering the Patriot Advanced Capability-3 and Gem.T missiles; Russia’s Rosoboronexport, marketing the S-300; China’s CPMIEC (China Precision Machinery Export-Import Corp.), offering its HQ-9; and the Italian-French consortium Eurosam, maker of the SAMP/T Aster 30. The Turkish military put the price of the acquisition of T-LORAMIDS at $1 billion, covering the purchase of four batteries. Raytheon and Lockheed Martin put the cost of providing 12 fire units at $4.5 billion.

In April 2007 the Undersecretariat for Defence Industries [SSM] issued a request for information to evaluate the price and availability of the systems. After the launch of the project, Russia sought exclusive state-to-state negotiations with Turkey instead of bidding in a tender. By late 2009, China and Russia both declined to bid for Turkey’s long-range air and missile defense systems (T-LORAMIDS) project, seeking state-to-state negotiations.

NATO officials warned Turkey that if it bought Chinese or Russian air and missile defense systems, Ankara would operate them without the Western alliance’s intelligence on incoming ballistic missiles.

On September 9, 2009 the US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) notified the US Congress of a possible Foreign Military Sale to the Government of Turkey of 13 PATRIOT Fire Units, 72 PATRIOT Advanced Capability (PAC-3) missiles, four PAC-3 Lot Validation Missiles, 197 MIM-104E PATRIOT Guidance Enhanced Missiles-T (GEM-T), four MIM-104E GEM-T Lot Validation Missiles, five PATRIOT Digital Missiles, five Anti-Tactical Missiles and other related support and equipment. The estimated cost was $7.8 billion.

In addition, the potential sale included eight AN/USQ-140(V)(2)(c) (RT-1785) or AN/USQ-140(V)(11)(c) Multifunctional Information Distribution Systems/Low Volume Terminals (MIDS/LVT-2), 13 AN/MPQ-65 Radar Sets, four Tactical Command Systems, 13 Battery Command Posts, six Communication Relay Groups, 13 Engagement Control Stations, 48 M902 Launching Stations, 52 Antenna Mast Groups, 13 Electronic Power Plant III (EPP), 100 THALES 9310C Very High Frequency (VHF) Voice Radios, 150 THALES 9310C VHF Data Radios, containers, battery and battalion maintenance equipment, prime movers, generators, electrical power units, personnel training and training equipment, trailers, communication equipment, tool and test sets, spare and repair parts, publications and technical documentation, U.S. Government and contractor technical, engineering, and logistics support services, and other related elements of logistics support.

European missile maker MBDA was hopeful to win a multibillion-dollar Turkish tender which would enable it to build Turkey's long-range air and missile defense system, known as T-Loramids. MBDA -- a missile developer and manufacturer with operations in France, Britain, Germany, and Italy -- offerred Turkey a complete freedom of technology transfer in case of a cooperation.

MBDA and French company Thales are partners in Eurosam. Eurosam is the industrial prime contractor and system design authority for the development, production, marketing and sales of a range of medium-range naval and ground-launched air-defence missiles, systems that were developed under contract from the French and Italian governments.

In a December 2010 press tour at MBDA facilities in Italy, company executives gave information about company profile and its operations, as well as their possible bid for T-Loramids project. MBDA officials guaranteed a joint understanding in developing Turkey's air and missile defense system, saying that MBDA products were the latest generation in NATO's joint defense systems.

MBDA executives said their products offered a great number of advantages against their U.S., Russian and Chinese rivals in T-Loramids tender, which they said were a full and unconditional technology transfer, NATO-compatibility, and joint production of T-Loramids missile systems, including a national software and industrial partnership and cooperation with Turkish defense industry firms. MBDA signed a framework agreement with Turkish defense industry companies Aselsan, Roketsan and Ayesas to develop an air defense system. The agreement prescribes a certain road map for cooperation.

Russian and Chinese systems do not offer NATO-compatible missiles, MBDA executives said, adding that producer of U.S. Patriot missiles does not allow freedom of technology transfer. Company's experts said MBDA would work together with Turkey also to develop a new generation missile launcher, if they won the T-Loramids tender for which U.S. Patriot, Russian S-400 and Chinese FD-2000 systems were expected to compete with Eurosam's Samp-T. MBDA produces around 3,000 missiles annually, and has a turnover of more than 3 billion euro. It was also interested in a project to build NATO's planned missile shield.

On 12 December 2019 the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee passed the “Promoting American National Security and Preventing the Resurgence of ISIS Act,” which includes provisions sanctioning Turkey for buying the S-400 system from Russia. “Turkey’s actions over the past year are truly beyond the pale,” Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ) said in a Wednesday tweet. “This bill makes clear to Turkey that its behavior with respect to Syria is unacceptable, and its purchase of the S-400 system is untenable.”

Join the GlobalSecurity.org mailing list