The Qatar Armed Forces has agreed to purchase an additional 12 Rafale multi-role fighter aircraft from Dassault Aviation.

The agreement will bring the total number of Rafale aircraft operated by the Qatar Emiri Air Force to 36.

In 2015, Qatar and Dassault Aviation signed a contract for the acquisition of 24 Rafale.

Dassault Aviation chairman and CEO Eric Trappier said: “This new agreement is built around the special relationship that exists between the two countries and the shared determination by the Defense Ministry of Qatar and Dassault Aviation to move forwards together.”

Rafale is capable of performing a very wide range of missions such as air-defence / air-superiority, anti-access/area denial, reconnaissance, close air support, dynamic targeting, air-to-ground precision strike/interdiction, anti-ship attacks, nuclear deterrence, and buddy-buddy refuelling.

The aircraft is expected to serve as the French armed forces’ prime combat aircraft until 2050 at least, according to Dassault.

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By GlobalData
“The aircraft is expected to serve as the French armed forces’ prime combat aircraft until 2050.”

Qatar has also signed a letter of intent to acquire 490 VBCI armoured vehicles from France’s Nexter.

The VBCI armoured infantry fighting vehicle has been designed to provide ballistic and mines protection, protection against improvised explosive devices (IEDs), chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear defence (CBRN) protection, and soft-kill protection.

The vehicle can be armed with various medium calibre turrets, Nexter stated.

Qatar has also committed to purchase 50 Airbus A321neo airliners.