France has unveiled an ambitious and wide-ranging military modernisation programme that includes the acquisition of additional Dassault Rafale fighters, an all-new fleet of light helicopters and additional aerial refuelling tankers.
Under the proposal, Paris intends, by 2025, to have a fleet of 171 Rafales for its air force and navy: up from 143 at the start of the period. The balance of its combat inventory will be made up of 55 upgraded Dassault Mirage 2000Ds.
France will also accelerate deliveries of its Airbus Defence & Space A330 multirole tanker transport tanker fleet. Twelve of the aircraft are due to be in service by 2025, as part of an eventual 15-strong inventory: an increase of three units over the dozen Phénix tankers originally envisaged.
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