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Qatar signs for 12 more Rafale fighters

07 December 2017

Qatar has exercised its option to buy a further 12 Dassault Rafale combat aircraft, the manufacturer announced on 7 December.

A Rafale combat aircraft mocked-up in Qatari national markings. Qatar will have 36 such fighters by the time that deliveries are expected to be complete in the early 2020s. (Dassault)A Rafale combat aircraft mocked-up in Qatari national markings. Qatar will have 36 such fighters by the time that deliveries are expected to be complete in the early 2020s. (Dassault)

The agreement, which adds to Qatar’s previous buy of 24 Rafales signed in May 2015, was penned during a visit to the Gulf state by French President Emmanuel Macron. While the initial 2015 contract was valued at USD7.02 billion (including weapons), no figure was given for this follow-on buy.

Of the first 24 Rafales, 18 are to be single-seat and six are to be twin-seat variants. It has not yet been disclosed as to which variants will make up the exercised options, but assuming that the Qatar Emiri Air Force (QEAF) does not plan to use the twin-seat aircraft in an operational capacity (as the Egyptians appear to have done), it will likely only consist of single-seaters.





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