President Erdogan of Turkey was quoted in local media saying that the country requires three aircraft carriers in order to be a “a deterrent at sea”.
Erdogan was quoted by Hurriyet Daily News here.
“Turkey is among the 10 countries that can design and produce its own warships. I see some shipbuilders with us today. We can build the second and third aircraft carriers, right? Can we? Because we need those to be a deterrent at sea. We continue to work and produce with the conscience that we don’t have a minute to lose.”
Is this realistic?
Turkey can certainly build the ships. The TCG Anadolu, pictured above, is an amphibious assault ship) of the Turkish Navy that can be configured as a light aircraft carrier. The ship has been designed to be capable of operating the F-35B aircraft however Turkey was removed from the F-35 programme in 2019 over security concerns.
Spanish firm Navantia provided the design, technology transfer, equipment and technical assistance to Sedef Shipyard of Turkey for the development of TCG Anadolu. It is also understood that the construction of an identical sister ship, to be named TCG Trakya, is currently being planned by the Turkish Navy.
Will they be aircraft carriers? Not really, not without fixed wing aircraft. Some Turkish military accounts are claiming that Turkey are planning on building supercarriers but I think that’s all I need to say on that.
2021-2026 is a realistic timeline to develop and bulld a Supercarrier and a sister ship
Turkey will have done its TFX Fighter (with a C version) by that time even fully develop its first Mus Stealth UCAV
Not to forget about the other Navy Projects pic.twitter.com/Q8L1QafrEv
— AceJace (@AceJacee) August 31, 2020
Turkey is building helicopter carriers, not aircraft carriers. Aircraft carriers carry fixed wing aircraft, rather than just rotary wing aircraft like helicopters.
In conclusion, don’t expect to see Turkish aircraft carriers anytime soon. What you should expect to see over the next decade is another amphibious assault ship identical to the Anadolu.