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Dassault bags another contract for Rafale fighters from Qatar

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The Rafale fighter. A Dassault Aviation photo

SAINT-CLOUD, FRANCE (BNS): After bagging a deal from New Delhi earlier this month for 36 Rafale fighters, French defence major Dassault Aviation is all set to ink yet another contract with Qatar for 24 of the multi-role warplanes.

Dassault announced on Thursday that Qatar has decided to acquire 24 Rafale aircraft to equip its Air Force.

A contract between the State of Qatar and Dassault Aviation will be signed on Monday, May 4 in Doha in the presence of François Hollande, President of the French Republic, the company said.

According to an AFP report, the deal includes a firm order for 24 jets with an option on 12 other planes, putting the total order for the jets at 36.

The latest deal is the third back-to-back order for the French Rafale combat planes this year. Dassault had so far failed to land a single order for the four+ generation warplanes.

While Egypt decided to acquire 24 Rafales in February this year at a cost of US$ 5.9 billion, India announced its decision to buy 36 of the fighters through a Government-to-Government negotiation process during Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Paris visit on April 10.

"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.

The company is also negotiating a deal with United Arab Emirates for the Rafale jets.

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