Military Aviation

Dassault Aviation activates second tranche of 18 Rafale omnirole jets for Indonesia

Second tranche of Rafale jets for Indonesia

As part of the contract signed by Indonesia on February 2022 for the acquisition of 42 Rafale, the second tranche of 18 Rafale came into force on Aug. 10, 2023. This follows the entry into force in September 2022 of the first tranche of 6 Rafale, bringing the total number of aircraft on order to 24.

The acquisition of the latest-generation Rafale for the Tentara Nasional Indonesia Angkatan Udara (Indonesian National Army Air Force) includes a complete “turnkey” solution as well as a substantial industrial return for the Indonesian aeronautical sector. Educational projects will also be launched as part of the technical training of aeronautical know-how.

The “omnirole” Rafale is a unique asset that will ensure Indonesia’s sovereignty and operational independence and reinforce its role as a major regional power.

“This new step consolidates the beginning of a long-term partnership with the Indonesian authorities, whom I would like to thank once again for their confidence. It testifies to the strategic link that unites Indonesia and France, and will be reflected in the growing presence of Dassault Aviation in the country”, said Eric Trappier, Chairman and CEO of Dassault Aviation, in a company news release.

Marketed for export to several countries

The Rafale has been marketed for export to several countries, and was selected for purchase by the Egyptian Air Force, the Indian Air Force, the Indian Naval Air Arm, the Qatar Air Force, the Hellenic Air Force, the Croatian Air Force, the Indonesian Air Force and the United Arab Emirates Air Force. The Rafale has been used in combat over Afghanistan, Libya, Mali, Iraq and Syria.

The Colombian government said on Dec. 21, 2022 that it shortlisted a French bid to sell 16 Rafale fighter planes to the South American nation for up to $3.15 billion but on Jan. 2, 2023 initial negotiations between Colombia and Dassault Aviation to replace part of the aging fleet of Israeli-made Kfir fighter jets of the Colombian Air Force (FAC, Fuerza Aérea Colombiana) have collapsed.

“So far, the Rafale aircraft proposal is the best option for the country in relation to price, efficiency and operability. One hour of flight time in a Rafale aircraft is approximately 30% cheaper than one hour of flight time in a Kfir,” the office of Colombia’s president said in a statement.

Dassault Aviation was not interested in an initial sale of three to five airplanes using the budget approved by the previous government, but instead wanted to negotiate for a total of 16 planes, Defense Minister Ivan Velasquez explained.

However, Velasquez said that there will be continued efforts in 2023 to see if a purchase is possible.

Photo credit: Senior Airman Tyler Woodward / U.S. Air Force

Dario Leone

Dario Leone is an aviation, defense and military writer. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviation Geek Club” one of the world’s most read military aviation blogs. His writing has appeared in The National Interest and other news media. He has reported from Europe and flown Super Puma and Cougar helicopters with the Swiss Air Force.

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