The political turbulence that has shaken Turkey since the Dec. 17 corruption investigations began has unnerved the country’s defense procurement bureaucracy and industry, with insiders expressing divided opinions over how the turmoil may affect major programs.
One defense procurement civil servant said the potential net effect would be a slowdown in decision-making as most officials will be unwilling to take the initiative on multi-billion dollar contracts for fear of being associated with potential corruption allegations.
Typically, he said, officials would be extra-careful “not to fall victim to slandering.” But that’s not the only complication: Both the bureaucracy and industry are carefully watching Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s short-term political moves. Erdoğan in recent years has effectively become the sole decision-maker in defense procurement. […]