It was announced by Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, that following huge investment in higher education since 2002, there has been a significant improvement in Turkish higher education in recent years.
Mr Erdogan informed reporters that the AK Party had initiated a project to establish universities in every province of Turkey, resulting in the number of universities increasing from 76 to 207, with an increased capacity of 8.4 million students, an increase from just 1.6 million. Mr Erdogan also noted that the ratio of female students has increased from 42% to 49% – some 5% higher than that EU average of 40%.
The initiative has also meant that thousands of young people are now able to access higher education in their own province, a move welcomed by those who are unable to leave their home cities. Mr Erdogan continued “It is important for us and for our future to provide university students the most advanced knowledge of our era. For this purpose, we attach special value to supporting newly established universities in terms of academic and administrative staff,” he said.
Mr Erdogan went on to say that the calibre of Turkey’s higher education system is attracting around 200,000 international students, who choose to complete their degree in Turkey, bringing in around $1 billion to the Turkish economy.
Turkey’s eagerly anticipated reform agenda has also been welcomed by the EU.
Nikolaus Meyer-Landrut, head of the European Union Delegation to Turkey, said recently that the Turkish government’s recently announced reform agenda is welcomed by the EU and they hope to see “concrete steps in a direction that will lead to the opening of a window of opportunity in EU-Turkish relations,”.
The reform package includes 59 articles, which cover issues such as economic and judicial reforms together with an EU action plan. Mr Meyer-Landrut commented “This is important not only for Turkey but also for Turkish-EU relations. As such, we will closely follow the developments.”
A video, released by the Turkish Ministry of Defence a few days ago, revealed that a test of the country’s locally-produced maritime missile, was successful in reaching it’s Black Sea target.
Tests of the long-range anti-ship missile, Atmaca, were carried out in the Northern province of Sinop. The missiles have a range of more than 124 kilometres, and is said to be a high precision, long-range, surface to surface missile, which can be used by patrol boats, frigates and corvettes.
The Turkish navy is currently using the American Harpoon missiles, which are expected to be replaced by the new Turkish Atmaca, which features enhanced qualities and has been in development since 2009.
Atmaca is effective against fixed and moving targets thanks to its resistance to countermeasures, target update, reattack and task cancelation capabilities, as well as an advanced, 3D routing system. There is also a land-based version of the missile.