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Turkey - Shipbuilding

Navy Shipyard
Tersanesi Komutanligi)
Patrol Boat
Tuzla Patrol Boat
Meko 200 Yavuz
Meko 200 Barbaros
Type 209 Gür
Type 209 Preveze
Type 209 Ay
Istanbul Shipyard
RMK Corvette Project
Coast Guard MRV OPV-600
Coast Guard SAR
Fast Attack Craft

LPD Levent
Patrol Craft (SG80)
Training Ship

Much of Turkey's indigenous naval construction has been carried out with cooperation from German shipbuilders. Turkey embarked on the MEKO 200 Frigate program to improve its anti-submarine, anti-air, and anti-surface ship capabilities. The program calls for eight ships to be built, four in Turkey and four in Germany. Even though the MEKO project was a Turkish-German co-production program, U.S. contractors provided $197 million worth of major combat, propulsion. and weapon systems. Four frigates of the MEKO-200 class were built in the 1990s at the main naval shipyard at Gölcük where three submarines of the 209-class (type-1200) had been built; four type-1400 submarines were commissioned between 1994 and 1998. Dogan-class fast-attack boats armed with Harpoon missiles have been produced in Turkish yards, as well as destroyer escorts, patrol boats, landing craft, and auxiliary craft. In 1993 private shipyards were invited to bid on construction of minesweepers and patrol boats.

Ship building is a 600 years old tradition in Turkey. The first shipyard was established in 1390. By the 16th century Turkish shipyards were already largest in the world. Traditional shipbuilding skills combined with modern techniques and education has enabled the Turkish shipbuilding industry to develop into an internationally known trademark since the early 1990’s Turkish ship and yacht building industry has modern, technological developed and quality certified shipyards together with well experienced work force. In Turkey’s shipyards brand new ships, Yachts, mega Yachts, and sailing boats are being manufactured. In addition to these, repair and maintenance services are provided for vessels.

In the beginning, mostly wooden ships and yachts were being manufactured. Later started the manufacturing of ships/yachts made of sheet iron. With its 600 years of history, shipbuilding today is in compliance with the international standards, thanks to efforts of the young entrepreneurs. The initial objective of the sector was merely to meet the needs of the Turkish Naval Commerce Fleet. However, having confirmed its technological competency outside Turkey, and especially to the European countries, today this sector has gained a considerable export potential.

Due to projects implemented in the 4 years 2005-2009 by the Turkish ministry of transport , to increase shipyard capacity, Turkey"s worldwide market share in shipbuilding rose from 0.9% to 1.4% making Turkey 5th in shipbuilding behind Germany which occupies 4th place with a share of 3.6%. With these developments the Turkish ministry of transport"s bureau for maritime affairs expanded its goals to become 4th by 2010. Turkish Shipbuilding capacity has increased by an average of 65% in the last four years. The number of shipyards operating or about to start operating in Tuzla as well as in the Black Sea, Izmit Gulf, Yalova, in the Aegean or Mediterranean has reached 60.

Turkish shipbuilding capacity rose from 654,000 DWT in 2003 to 1.4 million DWT in 2009 and the amount of sheet steel processed in shipyards has doubled. Maintenance and repair capacity have also seen a considerable increase. A million ton yearly capacity has been reached with the restructuring of some other shipyards. The Turkish shipbuilding industry shone brightly for a brief period between 2005 and 2008, increasing orders tenfold and moving from 23rd position to eighth, growing 360 percent in the process compared to a global average of 89 percent.

Since the global financial crisis however, hundreds of orders have been canceled and few new ones made. By 2011, shipyards in Istanbul's Tuzla district, home of some 40 percent of national production, reported employment drops of 77 percent.

The construction of the domestic fleet and the ships required by Turkey's Undersecretariat of the Defense Industry (SSM), along with public service ships and the reconstruction of the coaster fleet, are important projects for Turkish shipyards. Thanks to the SSM project MilGem, ships required by naval forces are built in Turkish shipyards. In fact, orders for these ships have even been received from NATO countries. In addition, Landing Platform Docks (LPD) are constructed in Turkish shipyards.

Due to the need for restructuring the shipyards of the Naval Forces Command due to the earthquake which occurred in the Marmara Region on 17 August 1999, the Pendik and Alaybey Shipyards, connected to the Turkish Shipbuilding Industry, were transferred to the Naval Forces Command and the shipbuilding capacities of the military shipyards increased significantly.

After the completion of the activities of the Taskizak Shipyard moving to the Pendik Shipyard under the name of the Istanbul Shipyard and the integration of the Izmir Shipyard with the Alaybey Shipyard, it was possible to build military ships up to 10,000 DWT and civilian ships up to 170,000 DWT. As a continuation of the projects carried out at the Istanbul, Gölcük and Izmir Shipyards until the present, it was possible to realize the design and building of high technology ships such as frigates, submarines, fast patrol boats and minesweepers along with landing ships, floating dry docks, coast guard boats, attack boats and various auxiliary class ships and naval vessels.

Along with the shipbuilding activities, the overhauls and periodic dry dock/breakdown repairs of all the combat and auxiliary class ships/marine vehicles and half lifespan modernizations in the inventory of the Naval Forces were realized at the Shipyard/Repair Support Commands connected to the Naval Forces Command.

Parallel to the late developments in local Defence Industry, Turkish Navy designs, develops and builts its' first mid-size (2000 T) corvette. HAVELSAN, being one of the largest contributor to the MILGEM Project as the main system integrator, provides Combat and Combat Management systems.

The Turkish navy had traditionally either bought its vessels secondhand, particularly from the United States, or had them built by foreign shipyards. The MILGEM project has its origins in a 1996 plan to have German MEKO A-100 corvettes built in Turkish shipyards. The Turkish navy subsequently shelved the idea and decided to try to build the country's first entirely indigenous modern warship using Turkish shipyards, universities, and companies.

Today, in Turkey's 60 modernized shipyards (2 public sector, 3 military and others private and most of them are located in Tuzla Shipyards area ) brand new ships, yachts, mega-yachts and sailing boats are being manufactured.

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Page last modified: 06-12-2021 10:05:46 ZULU