Boeing has been awarded a $500 million contract to provide aircrew and maintenance training for the Qatari Emiri Air Force’s fleet of 36 F-15QAs, the U.S. Defense Department said in a Thursday, August 28 release.
Boeing has been country-designated as the sole-source provider for Qatar’s F-15QAs. The support will be provided in St. Louis before being transferred to Qatar in 2021.
Work under the contract is expected to be completed in August 2026.
The F-15QA (Qatari Advanced) builds off Saudi Arabia’s F-15SA Advanced Eagle, which includes Raytheon’s APG-63(V)3 AESA radar, fly-by-wire control systems and two additional underwing weapons stations, bringing the total to 11.
The F15-QA will be able to carry 16 AIM-120 AMRAAM and four AIM-9X Sidewinder air-to-air missiles, as well as precision-guided air-to-surface missiles.
Qatar’s F-15QAs are set to be delivered by 2022 and fully operational by the following year.
The Gulf country has sought to diversify and more than septuple its fixed-wing fleet in recent years. In September 2018, Qatar signed a £5 billion ($6.6 billion at the time) deal with the U.K for 24 Eurofighter Typhoon multirole jets and nine Hawk trainer jets.
In late 2017, Qatar agreed a €1.1-billion deal to buy 12 French-built Dassault Rafale fighter jets, with an option for a further 36. That came on top of a 2015 agreement to purchase 24 Rafales.
Qatar is also acquiring dozens of rotary-wing aircraft from Europe and the U.S. In March 2018, Qatar signed a more than €3 billion contract for 28 NH90 military helicopters and 16 Airbus H125 light helicopters, and in May this year, the U.S. State Department approved a $3 billion purchase of 24 AH-64 Apache helicopters.