Airbus Defence and Space has received an order from the Republic of Kazakhstan for two A400M military transport jets.

The contract also includes the provision of complete maintenance and training support.

Kazakhstan joins the list of operators of the aircraft, including the UK, France, Spain, Luxembourg, Germany, Turkey, Belgium, and Malaysia. It will be the ninth country to operate the aircraft.

Airbus noted that the first aircraft delivery is scheduled for 2024.

Furthermore, Kazakhstan and Airbus also signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to partner on maintenance and overhaul services.

As the first step of this partnership, the partners created a local C295 maintenance centre.

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By GlobalData

Airbus Defence and Space CEO Michael Schoellhorn said: “The A400M will become the cornerstone of Kazakhstan’s tactical and strategic airlifting operations.

“This new export contract brings the total number of A400M orders to 176 aircraft, a figure that we expect to increase in the near future.

“With more than 100 aircraft delivered and 100,000 flight hours in operation, the A400M has proven its capabilities, reaching a state of maturity that many potential customers were waiting for.”

The A400M will allow Kazakhstan to rapidly respond to any mission by quickly deploying advanced capabilities over long distances. The military transporter also enables access to remote areas.

In April, the Airbus A400M aircraft completed a major helicopter air-to-air refuelling (AAR) certification campaign.

According to Airbus, the A400M has already showcased its capability to refuel fighter jet receivers such as Eurofighter, Rafale, Tornado or F/A-18.

It can also refuel another A400M and other large aircraft such as C295 or C-130.

The tanker can carry up to 50.8t of fuel in its wings and centre wing box, and an additional 5.7t of fuel each in two additional cargo hold tanks.