This paper attempts to assess the civilian character of Turkey’s political economy in sub-Saharan Africa with a special focus on its trade policy towards African countries. It also seeks to explore the degree to which its trade policies towards the continent contribute to the construction of a civilian foreign policy. Additionally, this study delves into the linkages between “power and trade” and between “civilian power and trade”. Assuming that Turkey is not usually conceived as a traditional civilian power in the IR literature and political debates, this paper aims to fill the lacuna in the existing literature focusing on the impact of trade on the making of civilian power. Applying Maull’s threefaceted framework of civilian power characteristics (cooperation, use of economic means, development of supranational structures), this study concludes that in Turkey’s emerging “civilian power” objectives, trade’s role is larger in the use of economic means for securing national goals and cooperation in the pursuit of international objectives than in the development of supranational structures for international management level.