French Rafale Fighter Jet Wins First Export Sale

(Aviation Week, Paris, 17 February 2015) Nearly three decades after its first flight  the Dassault-built Rafale has garnered its first export sale. The Egyptian air force is buying 24 of the multi-role fighters, including 16 two-seater and eight single-seat jets. A FREMM frigate, built by French shipbuilder DCNS, is also in the offing, as are a number of missiles. These include MBDA Mica air-to-air and Scalp long-range missiles, Sagem AASM precision-guided bombs and Lacroix decoys. The contract, which is estimated at €5.2 billion ($5.9 billion), is backed 50% by France's export credit agency Coface, thanks to a pool of French banks. The financing excludes a €500-million downpayment that Cairo will pay by mid-March.