Indonesia France Deal: After India, now that Indonesia has also bought the 'super-destroyer' Rafael Jet, China, which is trying to capture Natuna Island, will be hit hard.
Indonesia will buy 42 Rafale fighter jets from France in response to China's bullying in the South China Sea. Notably, Indonesia will buy more Rafale aircraft from France than from India, which indicates Indonesia's readiness.
French Defense Minister Florence Parle, who is on a visit to Indonesia, announced the agreement on social media on Thursday. After India, now that Indonesia has also bought the 'super-destroyer' Rafael Jet, China, which is trying to capture Natuna Island, will be hit hard.
Florence tweeted that it had been officially announced that Indonesia had ordered 42 Rafale fighter jets.
Dassault Aviation, the maker of the Raphael aircraft, said the deal was just the beginning of a long-term partnership. This will give the company a strong presence in Indonesia.
The agreement between France and Indonesia, which seeks to strengthen ties with countries in the Indo-Pacific region, will be significant. The two countries have been discussing the Raphael plane deal for a long time. Now not only Dragon's warships but also their fighter jets are in danger in the South China Sea.
The Raphael Agreement between France and Indonesia was first revealed by the French website La Tribune Financial. Defense relations between France and Indonesia have recently begun. Prior to the Raphael Agreement, eight Airbus H225M helicopters were sold to the Indonesian Air Force in 2019.
Indonesia to buy submarines too?
France has become more interested in the Indo-Pacific region after the Oaks Agreement between the United States, Britain and Australia. The French defense minister has indicated that Indonesia wants to buy submarines.
China and Indonesia are at loggerheads over Natuna Island in the South China Sea. In September, Indonesia intercepted a Chinese warship that had entered its territorial waters. Indonesia had evacuated a Chinese ship from Natuna Island. This area falls under the 'Exclusive Economy Zone' of Indonesia. Since then, China has begun to add to Indonesia's woes. Given the growing threat posed by China in the South China Sea, Indonesia has consistently focused on strengthening its military.