Qatar Confirms Order for 24 Rafales
(Source:; published April 30, 2015)
Qatar has become the third export customer for France’s Dassault Aviation Rafale, and its 24 aircraft order, worth up to €6.3 billion with its weapons and support package, increases export orders to 84. (Dassault photo)
PARIS --- The Emir of Qatar has agreed to buy 24 Dassault Rafale fighters, the Elysée Palace announced on Thursday morning, confirming reports by several French media earlier on April 30.

French President François Hollande will travel to Doha on May 4 to witness the signature of the contracts by the CEOs of Dassault Aviation and MBDA, according to the Elysée’s official communique. Contracts will be signed between the two manufacturers and the State of Qatar, while a separate agreement guaranteeing the deal will be signed between the two governments.

Earlier, citing sources at the Elysee Palace and the ministry of defense, Agence France Presse (AFP) had reported the deal will cover an initial batch of 24 aircraft with a further 12 on option. Contract value is estimated at over €3.5 billion. Including weapons supplied by MBDA, which are covered by a separate contract, the deal’s total value increases to €6.3 billion, Reuters reported citing MoD sources, but none of these figures have been officially confirmed.

Initial deliveries of a small number of aircraft could take place as early as 2017, but the remainder will depend on how fast Dassault can ramp up production.

After two decades of unsuccessful marketing, Dassault has this year received orders from Egypt (24 for approx. €3 billion), India (36 for €5.2 billon) and now Qatar (24 firm orders for approx. €3.5 billion), for a total of 84 aircraft worth nearly €12 billion, excluding the cost of Qatar’s 12 options.

Qatar, which currently operates a dozen Mirage 2000-5 (and previously operated Mirage F-1s, both made by Dassault) wants to procure a modern fighter and to expand its air force. After seeing the Rafale perform during the Libyan air operations in 2011, it opened talks to buy Rafales with then-President Nicolas Sarkozy, but later suspended them when he was voted out of office in 2012.

It reopened talks on a Rafale buy about two years ago, and was spurred to bring its order forward by recent Rafale orders from Egypt and India, which together will take up all available delivery positions for the next four or five years, until the production rate can be ramped up from its present 11 aircraft per year.

The United Arab Emirates have also recently reopened talks on the purchase of 60 Rafales, to replace their Mirage 2000-9s, and this probably also moved Qatar to place its order quickly to avoid having its deliveries further delayed.


Qatar Has Chosen the Rafale
(Source: Dassault Aviation; issued April 30, 2015)
SAINT-CLOUD, France --- Dassault Aviation is honored by Qatar's decision to acquire 24 Rafale aircraft to equip its Air Force.

The contract between the State of Qatar and Dassault Aviation is to be signed on Monday, May 4 in Doha in the presence of Mr. François Hollande, President of the French Republic.

Following on from the Mirage F1, the Alpha Jet and the Mirage 2000, the Rafale is set to extend the historic partnership between Qatar, France and Dassault Aviation.

"This new success for the French team demonstrates the Rafale's operational qualities and confirms the confidence that countries, that are already users of the Mirage 2000, have in our company", said Eric Trappier, Chairman and CEO of Dassault Aviation.

Dassault Aviation, its partners Thales and Safran, and the 500 companies associated with the Rafale programme, are delighted at the announcement of this new contract, constituting further proof of their competitiveness and their industrial and technological know-how.

With over 8,000 military and civil aircraft delivered to 90 countries over the last 60 years, logging some 28 million hours in flight, Dassault Aviation has built up expertise recognized worldwide in the design, development, sale and support of all types of aircraft, ranging from the Rafale fighter to the high-end Falcon family of business jets and military drones. Dassault Aviation posted sales of 3.68 billion euros in 2014, and has nearly 11,600 employees.



Breaking News from AFP See all

Official reports See all