India may have agreed to buying 36 Dassault Rafales in April, it now looks like negotiations for dozens of more Rafales have finally hit a dead end. Indian Defense Minister Manohar Parrikar said on May 31 that a further Rafale buy is ‘not economically viable and not necessary’.
The message comes after years and years of negotiations, which in April resulted in the deal for 36 aircraft. The original intention in New Delhi however, was to buy 126 Rafales. Talks about a follow on order continued, but the latest Indian message leaves little room for doubt and is a blow to Dassault. The French company luckily was successful in selling the Rafale to Egypt and Qatar earlier this year.
The total Indian order for 126 Rafales would have been worth about 20 billion USD. The agreed contract for 36 aircraft should be finalized in three to four months.
© 2015 Airheadsfly.com editor Elmer van Hest
Featured image: Dassault doesn’t seem to land another Rafale deal in India (Image © Marcel Burger)