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Indonesia to receive six Rafales by 2026

The Indonesian Air Force will receive the first batch of six Rafale fighter aircraft by 2026. (Dassault Aviation)

The Indonesian Air Force (Tentara Nasional Indonesia Angkatan Udara: TNI-AU) will receive the first batch of six Dassault Rafale multirole combat aircraft by 2026.

On 11 February a spokesperson of the Indonesian Ministry of Defense told local media that the first six Rafales on order will be delivered within 56 months from contract signature.

This comes after Indonesia signed an acquisition contract for 42 Rafales on 10 February. On this occasion, Indonesia's Minister of Defense Prabowo Subianto noted that only the first batch of six aircraft was under contract and that contracts will follow for the additional 36 aircraft on order.

Janes understands that funding for the first six airframes will come from a foreign-sourced loan, which will have to be approved by the Indonesian Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of National Development Planning (Kementerian Perencanaan Pembangunan Nasional: BAPPENAS). Follow-on batches of the aircraft will likley follow the same path and be funded by foreign lenders, with contracts becoming effective through advanced payments.

The disclosed delivery timeline would be consistent with an order for Rafale F4-standard aircraft, which will be available after 2025. Furthermore, the aircraft manufacturer said in the contract announcement that the TNI-AU will receive “42 latest-generation Rafale aircraft”, which suggests these will be F4-standard aircraft. At this stage, the exact configuration of the Indonesian Rafales has not been confirmed by either Dassault or Indonesian authorities.

If confirmed, Indonesia will be the second export country for the Rafale F4 after the UAE inked a deal for 80 such fighters in December 2021. Indonesia is also the second Rafale customer in the region, joining India that operates about 30 Rafales.

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