Kale Group and Pratt & Whitney have started a construction programme in Izmir ahead of the production of F135 engine parts for the Lockheed Martin F-35 in Turkey.

To be opened by the end of 2012, the new factory will employ 700 people within a five-year period.

"The F-35 is a great opportunity for Turkey to develop its aerospace industry," said Kale Aero general manager Ilhan Ozaydin. The company will focus on the production of titanium components under the deal with P&W, he said.

Separately, Dutch firm Fokker Elmo is also investing in a factory in Izmir, to support the production of launchers for the Lockheed Patriot air-defence system.

"If Turkey will choose the Patriot, we can transfer the launcher production to Turkey," said Fokker Elmo marketing and sales manager Rico Engelman.

Source: Flight International