Greece built military aircraft

Greece buys Dassault Rafale

Eric Trappier, Chairman and CEO of Dassault Aviation, and Theodoros Lagios, Director General for Defense and Investments of the Greek Ministry of Defense, signed two documents related to aircraft deliveries and logistical support. Florence Parly, French Defense Minister, and Greek Defense Minister Nikolaos Panagiotopoulos were present.

The purchase, which is estimated at 2.32 billion euros, was approved on January 14th with Parliament's approval of the Armaments Act. 276 MPs voted for it. The cost consists of 1.92 billion euros for the Rafales and another 400 million euros for the weapons package, including Meteor long-range air-to-air missiles, scalp cruise missiles and Exocet anti-ship missiles.

Since Greece wants to get new aircraft as soon as possible due to the tension with Turkey, twelve of the Rafale are made available from the stocks of the Armée de l´Air et de l´Espace.

Greece is to receive the Rafale fighter jets in three tranches: the first six used aircraft by June 2021 (6 months after signing the contract), six new aircraft after 26 months and a further six used jets after 26 months in 2023. The first Greek pilots are to be trained in France to be concluded in May.

The logistical support contract has a term of four and a half years. Its aim is to keep the availability of equipment and systems at the highest level.

After weeks of speculation, Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis officially announced the Rafale procurement in mid-September. "This announcement illustrates the strength of the partnership that has united the Greek Air Force and Dassault Aviation for more than 45 years and shows the ongoing strategic relationship between Greece and France," said Dassault Aviation at the time.

Greece ordered 40 Mirage F1s from Dassault Aviation in 1974, then 40 Mirage 2000s in 1985, and finally 15 Mirage 2000-5s in 2000; this latest contract also included the upgrading of 10 Mirage 2000s to the 2000-5 standard, with a major contribution from Greek industry.

Greece recently signed a contract for the modernization of 84 Lockheed Martin F-16s and is also planning to procure Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning IIs.