Apr 20, 2015
UAE Restarts Rafale Talks With France
France has been in talks for more than five years on a sale of 60 Rafales, with the UAE requiring a more capable fighter with an extensive weapons suite. The Rafale would replace the fleet of Mirage 2000-9s.
The fresh talks are looking at requirements rather than reviving discussions for 60 Rafales and it is too early to say how many aircraft would be purchased for how much.
The UAE is seen a potential buyer after Egypt sealed a deal for 24 Rafales and India announced a plan to order 36 off the assembly line in France.
The UAE is in talks with the US to order 30 Block 61 Lockheed Martin F-16s, which would add to the 80-strong fleet of Block 60 fighters.
Abu Dhabi had agreed with then-French President Nicolas Sarkozy to consider the Rafale as a replacement to the fleet of Mirage 2000-9s bought in 1998.
Fabius said there are also discussions on the Rafale with Qatar.