An analysis by the German Science and Policy Foundation (SWP) points out that Turkey’s recent moves in the defense industry could deepen its integration with the West and open up new cooperation opportunities. Turkey’s request to purchase 40 Eurofighter Typhoon fighter jets is an important development that opens the door to this new era.
According to an analysis by the German Science and Policy Foundation (SWP), Turkey’s purchase of the Eurofighter is more than just an arms deal, but will allow the country to integrate more tightly into Western military-industrial systems. This integration is seen as an opportunity to counterbalance Turkey’s moves towards its own strategic autonomy and strengthen its relations with NATO.
Another important point emphasized in the analysis is the diversification of Turkey’s defense export policies. If the Eurofighter deal fails to materialize, Ankara may alternatively consider the joint China-Pakistan JF-17 Thunder fighter jet. However, the Eurofighter deal is a step towards a more permanent role for Turkey in the international arena of defense production and military services.
TURKEY’S RISE IN THE DEFENSE INDUSTRY
Turkey’s rise in the defense industry is reflected in the conquest of new markets and the increase in arms exports. In 2023, more than 185 countries purchased military equipment from Turkey, with the products of Turkish defense companies attracting great interest, especially in Africa, Asia and Latin America. This is seen as an important step in achieving Turkey’s goals of technological innovation in the defense industry and reducing its dependence on foreign markets.
UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLES AND INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION
Turkey’s success in the production of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) is another topic highlighted in the SWP analysis. The use of Bayraktar TB-2 UCAVs in various conflict zones and the increase in exports demonstrate Turkey’s strength in the defense industry. Moreover, Baykar’s plan to build a UAV factory in Ukraine reinforces Turkey’s role within NATO and its support for Ukraine.