Airbus and Turkey have a long history of successful collaboration in civil and military aviation. For nearly 30 years, Airbus has been an important partner for the country, working closely with flag carrier Turkish Airlines, the Ministry of Defence and Presidency of Defence Industries, as well as Turkey’s air force, navy and coast guard.
Investments and partnerships – which have created more than 3,000 jobs in Turkey as of mid-2018 – have only strengthened the relationship and will continue to do so as the country’s industrial workforce steadily grows.
By the year 2020, Airbus will have invested nearly $2.5 billion in Turkey and by 2030, that figure will soar to over $5 billion.
These investments have returned concrete dividends: every commercial and military Airbus aircraft flying today has parts produced by Turkish suppliers. Not only are components manufactured in Turkey, but increasingly so are more complex major assemblies. Turkish suppliers also have assumed design responsibilities for such parts and assemblies as ailerons for the A350 Family and control surfaces for a number of commercial and military aircraft platforms.
Turkey is Airbus’ fourth-largest customer in Europe, with some 270 passenger and freighter aircraft in service with nine operators (as of 2018), with more on order.
Airbus aircraft share cockpit and operational commonality, allowing airlines to use the same pool of pilots, cabin crews and maintenance engineers, while bringing operational flexibility that results in significant cost savings. Several airlines in Turkey benefit from these advantages by operating more than one Airbus aircraft type in their fleet.
With approximately 270 Airbus passenger and freighter aircraft in service with nine operators, Turkey is Airbus’ fourth-largest customer in Europe.
Turkey has proved an important market for Airbus helicopters. Significant military contracts were signed in the 1990s for the delivery of AS532 Cougar helicopters to the Turkish armed forces. As of mid-2018, Turkey is the world’s largest Cougar operator with a fleet of 46 such helicopters operated by the Turkish Land Forces and the Air Force for general purpose and search-and-rescue missions.
Airbus has a strong presence in the parapublic emergency medical services segment in Turkey with 13 H135 helicopters operated by the Turkish Aeronautical Association for the needs of the Turkish Ministry of Health across the country.
Airbus’ defence and security presence in Turkey was established in 2013, providing sales and marketing support, along with support in the contractual, material and services sectors. This operation is actively playing a role in services and modernisation for the Turkish Air Force’s A400M multi-role airlifter, as well as providing material support for the CN235 tactical transport.
The Turkish Armed Forces are one of the pioneer air forces operating the A400M airlifter and also fly the largest fleet of CN235 transport aircraft.
Every commercial and military Airbus aircraft flying today has parts produced by Turkish suppliers.
In late 2017, Airbus was awarded the contract for the Türksat 5A and 5B telecommunication satellites, which are based on the latest Electric Orbit Raising (EOR) version of its highly-reliable Eurostar E3000 platform. The company continues along its path to become an integral part of the Turkish space industry by supporting various projects. Indeed, Airbus is uniquely positioned as a potential partner with the future Turkish Space Agency, able to open the door to the European Space Agency with perspectives encompassing research, development and commercial opportunities.
Turkish aeronautical industries work to ensure the highest level of capabilities and skills, and Airbus is likewise focused on the continued development of long-term aviation cooperation projects. Rate increases for the A320 and A350 XWB jetliner families will create additional jobs, and Turkish aeronautical industries will benefit from added responsibilities resulting from the continuous development of its strategic skills.
Airbus has seven major industrial partners and subsidiaries in Turkey.
Airbus’ goal is to continuously push the boundaries for new and better methods to apply the most advanced technology to continuously innovate its products, business and services.
Turkish Aerospace and Airbus signed, in September 2018, a Cooperation and Research agreement to co-develop and engage in research and experimentation in aircraft secondary structures, such as movable parts, for Airbus programs. By combining resources and knowledge to develop data-driven capabilities, Turkish Aerospace and Airbus will gain insights into advanced manufacturing methods for cost-effective and environmentally-friendly aircraft.
Launched in January 2018 by Turkish Airlines, İbn Haldun University and Airbus, “Air Transport Management Master’s Program” is a comprehensive 18-month academic course designed to provide future aviation executives with sufficient capabilities to run the region’s fast-growing aerospace industry. The program is endowed by globally reputable institutions like Cranfield University and British Columbia University, and is held at the Turkish Airlines Aviation Academy Campus.
Airbus considers Turkey a strategic industrial partner and is committed to long-term, mutually-beneficial industrial cooperation through the placement of work packages that include technology transfers. Such transfers help build skills and competencies in the country’s aviation industry.
Airbus’ Global Market Forecast for 2018-2037 predicts that over the coming 20 years, passenger traffic to, from and within Turkey will more than triple. Airbus is extremely well-positioned to meet this demand with its eco-efficient, modern aircraft families, and Turkish aerospace companies are equally well-positioned to benefit from this growth through long-term industrial partnerships with Airbus.
Technology transfers and the expansion of Turkey’s aviation industry know-how underpin Airbus’ long-term commitment to the country.