France to buy 12 Airbus aerial tankers

By Reuters

Nov 20, 2014 11:59 PM EST

France has confirmed the selection of 12 Airbus A330 refueling tankers for the French Air Force, Airbus Group said on Thursday.

First delivery is expected in 2018, followed by a second in 2019 and then at a rate of one or two per year, Airbus Defense & Space said in a statement.

India and Qatar are in the "final stages of contractual negotiations" for six and two aircraft respectively, Airbus said.

Airbus said France is the sixth country to order the tanker after AustraliaSaudi Arabia, Singapore, the United Arab Emirates and Britain.

A total of 22 aircraft are in service, it said.

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