Turkey’s Locally Built Logistical Support Ship Launched

Issue 77 - September 2017

The logistic support ship “Üsteğmen Arif Ekmekçi” built at the Selah Shipyard within the scope of the Naval Forces Command’s requirements was launched at the ceremony held on 08 July 2017 at Selah Shipyard located in Tuzla/Istanbul. 

Prime Minister Mr. Binali Yıldırım, Chief of Defense Full General Hulusi Akar, Minister of National Defense Mr. Fikri Işık (Former Minister of National Defense), Minister of Transport, Maritime Affairs and Communication Mr. Ahmet Arslan, Commander of Naval Forces Full Admiral Bülent Bostanoğlu, Commander of the Fleet Full Admiral Veysel Kösele and many invitees attended the ceremony taking place at the Selah Shipyard’s facilities at Tuzla.

Addressing the attendees at the ceremony, Prime Minister Mr. Binali Yıldırım underlined that the domestic defense industry has been gaining strength day by day and added that the local rate of participation exceeded 60%. Mr. Yıldırım continued: “We made great progress in the last 15 years in the defense industry. We increased the domestic participation rate to over 60% from 24% and now we are able to fulfil the demands of the forces of our friendly and allied countries.”

In the course of his speech Prime Minister Mr. Binali Yıldırım conveyed detailed information on the capabilities that will be acquired by the Turkish Naval Forces through the logistic support ships. Mr. Yıldırım: “With the help of the “Üsteğmen Arif Ekmekçi” logistic support ship which will be launched today and the “Yüzbaşı Güngör Durmuş” Ship launched last October, our Turkish Naval Forces will be strengthened further. These ships have the capacity of carrying 4 thousand tons of diesel oil, sufficient for travelling around the world one and a half times. Moreover, they bear the capacity of carrying 335 tons of helicopter fuel, 630 tons of fresh water and 108 cubic meters of food, freight and equipment. Due to the capacity of the ships, they will be able to fulfil the fuel requirements of all combat elements of our Naval Forces and replenish all fuel depots on the coasts. The ship has a long range and thanks to the helicopter deck over it, the heaviest helicopters up to 15 tons will be able to take off and land over the ship night and day.  Defense and communication facilities will be available on the ship to fight against  asymmetric attacks. “Üsteğmen Arif Ekmekçi”, one of the leading ships in its category with its equipment and capacity, will make a significant contribution to our country’s defense, with our Naval Forces being in the first place.”

During his remark at the ceremony, Commander of the Naval Forces Full Admiral Bülent Bostanoğlu said, “The campaign launched in 1965 by the Ship Association with the motto ‘Build Your Own Ship’ paved the way for our National Defense Industry to design and build its unique ships at its local shipyards. Today, the marines that can manage to design and those that have the capacity of building and sustaining their own ships are respected instead of those having the most modern ships and they can manage to be efficient, deterrent and permanent.” Noting that 8 Training Boats, 2 SAT Boats, 2 Fast Intervention Boats, 16 Tuzla Class Patrol Boats, 3 Logistic Support Ships, 1 Submarine Rescue Mother Ship (MOSHIP), 8 High-Speed Amphibious Ships, 1 Tank Landing Ship built so far at the shipyards of the private sector were successfully conducting their tasks, Full Admiral Bostanoğlu continued: “Moreover, currently the construction and equipment installation activities of the Landing Helicopter Dock “Anadolu”, 1 Landing Ship Tank, 2 Logistic Support Ships, 2 Rescue and Towing Ships and 1 Test and Evaluation Ship are being carried on at the private sector shipyards. We believe that the 48 ships, the construction activities of which were completed or ongoing at the shipyards in the private sector for our Naval Forces Command, are the most concrete indicator of the level reached by our private shipyards in respect to construction capabilities. The contract amount of 48 ships is valued at approximately $ 2.7 billion . When we add the services received from the private sector in the construction of the Ada class corvettes, the aforesaid figure reaches nearly $ 3.5 billion. We can claim that through the military ship procurement method, vital contribution is made to the development of our country’s ship construction industry and numerous domestic sub industry sectors and therefore to the progress of our country in general. Three ‘I’ class frigates will be built at the private shipyards in the upcoming period. The private shipyards will be building a warship of this size for the first time and thus they will acquire another critical capacity. As the Naval Forces Command, we strive utmost efforts for improving the export capabilities of the private shipyards. In order to promote our vessels to the friendly and allied countries that are our potential clients, we are executing port visits and mutual training, we also invite foreign observers to the actual firings of our vessels and demonstrate our counterparts our vessel facilities and capabilities.”

Logistic Support Ships to be Commissioned into Service in 2018

The logistic support ships capable of performing all types of tasks in the Aegean, East Mediterranean, Marmara and Black Sea will fulfil the fuel requirements of the combat surface vessels, accomplish the resupply of fuel depots and fuel transfer between the depots and cover the JP-5, fresh water and food requirements of the combatant units.

The logistic support ships span 106.51 meters in length,  with beam of 16.80 meters and 6150 tons of design draught DWT and helicopter deck. The vessel is capable of performing its task in a range of 9500 knots (17594 km) at a maximum speed of 12 knots per hour (22 km/hour). The “Yüzbaşı Güngör Durmuş” ship launched in October 2016 and “Üsteğmen Arif Ekmekçi” ship launched on July 8th as part of the project are planned to be delivered to the Naval Forces Command within 2018