Indonesia solidifies its standing as a regional power by activating the final tranche 18 Rafale fighter jets. 

This concludes a contract signed in February 2022, reflecting the nation’s commitment to sovereignty, operational independence, and partnerships.

This follows the preceding activations in September 2022 and August 2023, marking the completion of the 42-aircraft order made in February 2022.

Indonesia’s expanding defence budget is anticipated to reach $9.7bn by 2028, with a focus on air capabilitiesaccording to GlobalData. The nation’s defence spending growth is fuelled by ongoing modernisation efforts and the need to address natural disasters and counter-terrorism challenges. The military fixed-wing aircraft sector is the primary recipient of funding, totaling $22.7bn from 2023 to 2028. 

The decision to incorporate the Rafale fleet represents Indonesia’s strategic move to wield a distinctive instrument for sovereignty and operational independence. Eric Trappier, chairman and CEO of Dassault Aviation, emphasised the uniqueness of the Rafale as a tool that not only strengthens Indonesia’s military but also paves the way for industrial and academic collaborations.

“In choosing the Rafale, Indonesia has opted for a unique tool for sovereignty and operational independence that will help consolidate its role as a major regional power. This choice also consolidates ambitious industrial and academic co-operations. We are fully committed to making this partnership a success, with a resolutely long-term vision,” affirmed Eric Trappier.

In recent developments across the globe, India has chosen to bolster its air and maritime capabilities by equipping its Navy with the Navy Rafale. Croatia officially acquired its first Rafale multirole combat aircraft in another historic moment. Meanwhile, Greece signed a deal to procure six additional Rafale jets, expanding the Hellenic Air Force’s fleet to 24 planes. These decisions underline the global recognition of Rafale’s capabilities.