Türkiye Petrolleri Anonim Ortaklığı (TPAO) (Turkish Petroleum Corporation) was founded in 1954 by Law No. 6327 with the responsibility of being involved in hydrocarbon exploration, drilling, production, refinery and marketing activities of oil and gas in Turkey as the national company.

Türkiye Petrolleri Anonim Ortaklığı (TPAO)
IndustryOil and gas industry
Founded1954 (1954)
Key people
Melih Han Bilgin (CEO)
ProductsPetroleum products
RevenueGreen Arrow Up.svg US$ 29.5 billion (2012)
US$ 9 billion (2012)
Total assetsUS$ 22.5 billion (2012)
Total equityUS$ 12.4 billion (2012)
OwnerTurkey Wealth Fund
Number of employees
4,800 (2013)

Being an important actor of the national economy, TPAO achieved many “firsts” of the Turkish oil industry.[citation needed] The company, its history reaching back over a half century, has given rise to seventeen major companies, including Petkim, Tüpraş and POAŞ to Turkey.

Until 1983, as an integrated oil company, it was engaged in all the activity fields of oil industry from exploration to production, refinery, marketing and transportation. Today, TPAO is a national oil company involved in merely upstream (exploration, drilling, well completion and production) sector.[1]


The core activities of TPAO are:[citation needed]

  • Exploration, drilling, production and well completion
  • Natural gas storage
  • Participation to oil and natural gas pipeline projects


TPAO building in Ankara

In accordance with the company's vision and mission for meeting Turkey’s continuously increasing oil and natural gas demand through domestic and international sources, with the new exploration strategy, the company extends its activities in unexplored basins of Turkey, especially Black Sea and Mediterranean offshore areas.

With seismic surveys held since 2003, it has attained substantial information about the hydrocarbon potential of Turkey offshore.[citation needed] The first economical natural gas discovery made the region the focus of many oil companies.[citation needed]

TPAO continues farm-out activities covering Mersin and İskenderun Bays licenses following Antalya Bay.

In 2013, the company purchased the seismographic research/survey vessel RV Barbaros Hayreddin Paşa worth US$130 million for gas and oil field exploration in Black Sea and the Mediterranean Sea.[2]


Azerbaijan projects:[citation needed]

Iraq projects:[citation needed]

  • Badra Oil Field Development project with 10% share
  • Missan Oil Field Development project with 11.25% share
  • Siba Gas Field Development project with 40% share
  • Mansuriya Gas Field Development project with 50% share (operator)

Russia project:

TPAO acquired 49% of shares in MOL's BaiTex LLC, which is the holder of the hydrocarbon licenses for Baituganskoye field and Yerilkinsky block in the Volga-Ural region, Russia.[3]


  • 1954: Foundation; capital: 150 million TL
  • 1958: The first discovery; Germik Field
  • 1959: The first district management “Batman”
  • 1960: Application of secondary recovery process
  • 1960: Establishment of İPRAŞ
  • 1961: Discovery of the biggest oil field of Turkey - Batı Raman Field
  • 1963: Establishment of the first service station
  • 1965: Establishment of PETKİM
  • 1966: Establishment of İPRAGAZ
  • 1967: Establishment of Aliağa Refinery in İzmir
  • 1967: Opening of the first pipeline (Batman-Dörtyol-İskenderun)
  • 1968: Annual production: 1 million barrels
  • 1968: TPAO Batman Orchestra awarded "Golden Microphone"
  • 1969: Establishment of TÜMAŞ
  • 1970: The first offshore exploration: Payas-1
  • 1970: The first natural gas discovery: Thrace/Hamitabat
  • 1971: Adıyaman's first oil discovery
  • 1971: Establishment of İGSAŞ
  • 1972: Adıyaman-Sarıl Oil Pipeline start-up
  • 1974: Establishment of DİTAŞ, BOTAŞ and ADAŞ
  • 1974: Establishment of research center
  • 1974: Establishment of Cyprus Turkish Petroleum Ltd. Company
  • 1975: Establishment of ISILİTAŞ
  • 1975: 100 million barrels in production
  • 1975: TPAO ranks 204th of the world's biggest companies at Fortune except USA
  • 1976: Driiling of Akçakoca-1 well in the Black Sea
  • 1977: Establishment of Ankara Drilling District Management
  • 1980: New exploration strategies, big increase in discoveries
  • 1980: TPAO ranks 97th of the world's biggest companies at Fortune except USA
  • 1983: Establishment of Libya Arab-Turkish joint engineering and architecture company
  • 1983: Status change in TPAO and disintegration starts
  • 1983: TPAO assumed the title of the most oil producing company in Turkey
  • 1984: Establishment of the second district management - “Thrace District Management”
  • 1985: TPAO ranks 63rd of the world's biggest companies at Fortune except USA
  • 1986: Establishment of Kırıkkale Refinery
  • 1986: Drilling record in Turkey in 123 wells with 224,392 m (736,194 ft)
  • 1987: The deepest drilling in Demre-1 (Kaş-Antalya)
  • 1987: TPAO in the international Arenaı
  • 1988: Discoveries of Karakuş oil field in Adıyaman and K. Marmara natural gas fields in Marmara Sea
  • 1988: Establishment of Turkish Petroleum International Company (TPIC)
  • 1989: TPAO ranks 298th at Fortune except USA
  • 1991: Modernization in interpretation systems-3D interpretation
  • 1991: The first golden year - record in production of 50 years - 75.000 barrels/day - discovery of Karakuş oil field
  • 1992: Establishment of the third district management “Adıyaman District Management”
  • 1993: Establishment of joint company KTM Ltd.
  • 1997: First offshore production in Kuzey Marmara Field
  • 1998: First oil discovery in Western Anatolia; Alaşehir-1
  • 1999: TPAO initializes the first underground natural gas storage in Turkey
  • 1999: Baku-Tblisi-Ceyhan (BTC) main export oil pipeline project
  • 2001: South Caucasus Natural Gas Pipeline Project (SCP)
  • 2004: First natural gas discovery in Western Black Sea; Ayazlı-1
  • 2007: Second golden year: 100.000 barrels/day production
  • 2007: Starting of commercial activity of Northern Marmara and Değirmenköy (Silivri) Depleted Gas Reservoir
  • 2007: First natural gas production in the Black Sea
  • 2009: New drilling record; the drilling of the world's 46th deepest well with a vertical depth of 7,216 m
  • 2010: Deep water drilling with "Leiv Eiriksson", Sinop-1 and Yassıhöyük-1; the first deep water operatorship (Yassıhöyük-1)
  • 2011: Deep water drilling, Sürmene-1 4,830 m (15,850 ft)
  • 2011: Installation of Akçakoca offshore platform[4]

Four Korean-built deepwater drillships are bought, named after the most famous Ottoman conquerors, and put into commission:


In 2019 TPAO made an operating loss of 239 thousand lira for each of its 3700 employees.[5]: 38 


  1. ^ "Türkiye Petrolleri A.O". www.tpao.gov.tr. Retrieved 17 April 2018.
  2. ^ "Barbaros Hayreddin Paşa Gemisi Hizmete Alındı". Yeni Şafak (in Turkish). 2013-02-23. Retrieved 2013-02-23.
  3. ^ "Türkiye Petrolleri A.O". www.tpao.gov.tr. Retrieved 17 April 2018.
  4. ^ "Türkiye Petrolleri A.O". www.tpao.gov.tr. Retrieved 17 April 2018.
  5. ^ 2019 Annual Ownership Report for State Owned Enterprises (PDF). Ministry of Treasury and Finance (Turkey) (Report).{{cite report}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)

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