Turkish defence giant ASELSAN’s revenue increased last year by 24 percent, reaching $2.23 billion, as the company signed export contracts worth over $450 million.

Turkish defence firm ASELSAN increased its turnover by 24 percent in 2020 compared to the previous year by reaching $2.23 billion, the company announced via its Twitter account on Tuesday.

Turkey's largest defence manufacturer also made $630 million net profit, 33 percent higher than the previous year.

Despite the ‘negative effects of the pandemic’, as the company called it, it managed to increase export contracts to touch the $450 million for 2020.

Accordingly, ASELSAN, which significantly increased its collections with export-generated revenues, completed the year with a strong cash position.

The company is the world’s 48th largest defence firm, according to one calculation, with its sales and production network spanning 12 countries on 3 continents.

ASELSAN was established in 1975 to meet the communication needs of the Turkish Armed Forces, and allocates seven percent of its annual budget to research and development.

CEO Haluk Gorgun defined Aselsan as an R&D and engineering company working with approximately 9,000 personnel, adding that 1,479 new personnel were hired during the pandemic.

ASELSAN’s product portfolio is made up of communication and information technologies, radar and electronic warfare, electro-optics, avionics, unmanned systems, land, naval and weapon systems, air defence and missile systems, command and control systems, transportation, security, traffic, automation and medical systems. 

Growing Turkish defence industry

Amid internal and external threats to its national security, Turkey has become a rapidly growing manufacturer and exporter of military equipment, including heavy weapons.

Within the last decade in particular, Turkey has developed several domestic vehicles, rockets, weapons systems and other defence products. 

Together with ASELSAN, there are several private companies and public enterprises working on producing high-tech military equipment such as Turkish Aerospace Industries, Havelsan, Roketsan, TUBITAK, Baykar, Tusas and FNSS Defence Systems.

According to data released by SIPRI, from 2010 to 2019, Turkey increased its arms exports by 240 percent when it came to units of aircraft, armoured vehicles, artillery, missiles, sensors and ships. 

In the last five years, Turkey has exported unmanned aerial vehicles(UAV), missiles, armoured vehicles, artillery and ships to Pakistan, Malaysia, Oman, Qatar and Azerbaijan, to name the principal markets.

Thanks to the successful integration of bombs in these UAVs, they have carried out several operations in Syria.

The Turkish HISAR air defence missiles project also kicked off in 2007. HISAR-A and HISAR-O are short and medium-range missiles deployed along the Syrian border. They consist of a Self Propelled Autonomous Low Altitude Air Defence Missile System, Missile Launch System, Low Altitude Missile and Missile Transport and a Loading System, developed indigenously by Turkish defence industry companies ASELSAN and ROKETSAN.

Turkey has long been working on producing a domestic long-range air defence system and domestic fighter jets under the Vision for 2023 plan.

"I hope our warplane, which will be indigenous at every stage of design and production, will roll out of the hangar in 2023," Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said last year.

Source: TRT World