USD 20 billion
Total defense expenditures of Turkey in 2019.
USD 10.9 billion
Total turnover of Turkey’s defense and aerospace industry in 2019.
USD 3 billion
Total export value of Turkish defense and aerospace industry in 2019.
USD 19.5 billion
Total turnover of Turkey’s civil aviation services in 2019.
Number of aircrafts in Turkey’s civil aviation fleet.
Number of airline passengers in Turkey in 2019.
The Turkish defense and aerospace industry has been undergoing a profound transformation over the past decades. Having achieved unparalleled success in the industry in recent years, today Turkey has one of the fastest developing defense and aerospace industries in the world. The experience and emphasis on quality is evident among Turkish defense and aerospace companies as they undertake numerous endeavors, create products that are competitive worldwide, and assume important roles in international projects. With their qualified human resources and state-of-the-art technology infrastructure, Turkish companies bring global solutions to satisfy many countries' local requirements. These Turkish companies conduct activities in many critical areas of the defense and aerospace industry, from original design development to domestic production, from modernization to modification, and from R&D to international projects.
During the establishment of the domestic defense industry infrastructure, the preference was to cooperate and co-produce with leading countries and associated companies. This enabled many defense projects like the MİLGEM battleship, the ALTAY Main Battle Tank, ATAK helicopters, and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) to be successfully developed by the national defense industry. Building upon this early experience, Turkey ventured forth with further indigenous projects, including the ANKA UAV, the HÜRKUŞ ground attack aircraft, the GÖKTÜRK satellite, a light utility helicopter, as well as a jet fighter aircraft. In addition, some important sub-systems and technology development projects have been initiated to support such programs. Today, thanks in part to many of the indigenous projects it has developed, the Turkish defense industry is quite mature in terms of its capabilities, quality, and proficiency. The Turkish defense industry both meets the needs of the Turkish Armed Forces and is a known player in the fiercely competitive international defense market. In the coming years, the industry's share in domestic and overseas markets is set to increase as important national defense projects are completed.
Turkey is one of the largest defense spenders in the world. With defense spending exceeding USD 20 billion in 2019, Turkey ranked 16th among the world's largest defense budgets. In the past decade, the defense industry's turnover has more than tripled, reaching USD 10.9 billion in 2019. In parallel with Turkish aerospace and defense industry's growth in the past decade, export and international cooperation opportunities have increased for Turkish companies. The industry's exports increased from USD 600 million in 2007 to USD 3 billion in 2019. Thanks to its advanced and qualified production capacity, the sector received USD 12.2 billion in orders in 2018, while this figure rose to USD 10.67 billion in 2019. In addition, whereas defense projects with a budget of around USD 5.5 billion were carried out in 2002, the project volume has reached USD 55.8 billion to date, posting around a tenfold increase. Considering the projects that are currently in the tendering process, this amount is estimated to surpass USD 60 billion.
Over the years, Turkey has also emerged as an ideal place for civil aviation business. The number of airline passengers increased from 34 million in 2004 to 208.9 million in 2019, including 108.4 million international passengers. The size of the airline fleet increased from 162 to 515 between 2003 and 2018, reaching 546 in 2019. Meanwhile, the total number of civilian aircraft climbed from 626 to 1,404 between 2004 and 2018, while it rose to 1,501 as of 2020. During the same period, civil aviation revenue increased from USD 2.2 billion to around USD 19.5 billion as of 2019. Turkey is determined to position itself as a hub for civil aviation. A new airport has been constructed in Istanbul, and it is the largest airport in the world with a capacity of 200 million passengers per year and flights to nearly 350 destinations.