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Turkish President Erdogan asks Musk to build Tesla factory in Turkey – Yahoo News

By Chandni Shah and Darren Butler

ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan has asked Tesla CEO Elon Musk to build a Tesla factory in Turkey, the country’s communications directorate said on Monday.

It quoted Musk as saying that several Turkish suppliers were already working with Tesla and that Turkey was one of the most important candidates for its next factory.

Tesla did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Turkey’s state-owned Anadolu news agency reported that Erdogan and Musk were speaking during a meeting at Turkish House, a skyscraper near the United Nations in New York.

Erdogan is in the US to attend the 78th session of the United Nations General Assembly.

During the meeting, Erdogan also said Turkey was open to cooperation on artificial intelligence and Musk’s SpaceX’s satellite internet venture Starlink, the Communications Directorate said.

It quoted Musk as saying that SpaceX wants to work with Turkish authorities to obtain the necessary licenses to provide Starlink satellite services in Turkey.

It also said Erdogan invited Musk to attend the Turkish aerospace and technology festival TechnoFest in Izmir in late September and quoted Musk as saying he would gladly attend.

Musk is also scheduled to meet Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in California on Monday. Musk posted on social media platform X that their conversation would focus on artificial intelligence technology.

Tesla in August had expressed interest in building a factory in India that would produce low-cost electric vehicles.

Tesla currently has six factories and is building a seventh factory in northern Nuevo Leon state in Mexico, part of the automaker’s effort to expand its global footprint.

Musk said in May that Tesla would likely choose a location for a new factory by the end of this year.

Tesla shares have surged 123% so far this year and the automaker said Saturday it had produced its 5 millionth car.

In addition to running Tesla, Musk also bought X, formerly known as Twitter, for $44 billion in 2022.

Describing himself as an absolutist of free speech, Musk has complied with some demands from the Turkish government to censor content in the country. In other cases, the social media company has objected to orders from Turkish courts.

(Reporting by Chandni Shah in Bengaluru and Darren Butler in Istanbul; Additional reporting by Michael Darby in New York; Editing by Lisa Shumaker and Jamie Freed)


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