Merkava tank exports rise 10%

The Manufacturers Association of Israel said Tuesday it expects exports of the Merkava tank to grow 10% to $310 million by year end.

The Manufacturers Association of Israel said Tuesday it expects exports of the Merkava tank to grow 10% to $310 million by year end. That growth should continue next year with exports of the armored vehicle reaching $370m. in 2007, the association said. Local sales of the tank also are expected to soar as indications from the Israel Defense Force show it plans to replace 40% of its old tanks with the Merkava 4 over the next 20 years. The IDF intends to upgrade 2% to 3% of its total tank force in the coming year, the association said.