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Fighters & Attack | France | Interoperability | Issues - International | Lobbying | Other Corporation | Rumours | Saudi Arabia

Saudi Rumors of Rafale: Stalled?

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Rafale: dark horse?(click for cutaway view) In December 2006, The Business online reported that the Saudi government was in talks to buy 36 Rafale fighter jets from the French, regardless of how ongoing issues with the Eurofighter Typhoon contract were resolved. The Dassault Rafale contract would reportedly be in addition to the Eurofighter, not an either-or deal. With support and complementary ordnance added in, this could easily become a $5-15 billion transaction of its own. It was just the latest chapter in a string of reports along these lines that stretch back to at least April 2005. Now, a Reuters report indicates that interest in the French fighter may be fading. Saudi Interest French Rafale(click to view full) The Saudis have saved fighter production lines before. In September 1992, a long-awaited $5+ billion sale of 72 F-15XP/S Strike Eagles to Saudi Arabia saved the F-15 production line from imminent shutdown. In late January 1993, Saudi Arabia placed its long-awaited Al Yamamah II order for 48 Tornado Interdictor Strike (IDS) aircraft, just several weeks after the Panavia production line finished its last home-country Tornado order. Ironically, that Al Yamamah deal would later become the focus of a major fraud investigation in […]

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