France’s President Emmanuel Macron and Sheikh Mohammed ben Zayed Al Nahyane, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Vice Commander of the United Arab Emirates’s Armed Forces (UAE), were in attendance when Eric Trappier, Chairman and CEO of Dassault Aviation, signed a historic contract for 80 Rafale F4 jets for UAE, in the presence of Sheikh Mohammed and Sheikh Zayed (UAE AF & AD).
The Emirates Air Force will be the first non-French user of the Rafale F4, which will allow the Emirates armed forces to maintain their operational independence and sovereignty. Dassault Aviation and the Emirates Air Force mobilised fully to win this contract, which builds on a 45-year trust relationship developed on the Mirage family of fighter aircraft, particularly the Mirage 2000-9, whose modernization began two years ago.
We are very proud and happy to have sold 80 Rafale fighter jets to the UAE Federation as a French success storey. I’d want to express my gratitude to the officials at Emirates for their restored faith in our planes. Following on from the Mirage 5 and Mirage 2000 contracts, the Rafale deal strengthens the strategic connection between our two countries and provides satisfaction to the Emirates Air Force, a long-term and demanding partner of our company. Team France’s success can be attributed in part to the positive working relationship between the French government and the private sector. The Rafale has already been exported to five other countries.