Algerian Air Force orders more Su-30, MiG-29 fighter jets

The Algerian Air Force has ordered additional Su-30MKA and MiG-29M/M2 fighters from Russia in a contract worth nearly $2 billion.

According to Vedomosti, a Russian-based newspaper, Algeria ordered an additional 16 Su-30MKA and 14 MiG-29M/M2 fighter jets for $1.8 mill excluding weapons and training.

These will complement the 58 Sukhois and MiGs already in service with the Algerian Air Force.

The MiG-29M and two seat MiG-29M2 offers longer range due to increased internal fuel, a lighter airframe, slightly more powerful and improved RD-33MK engines, an in-flight refuelling probe, multi-function displays in the cockpit and improved avionics than the legacy MiG-29.

To replace its aging fleet, Algeria had previously ordered 34 new MiG-29SMTs from Russia, but due to quality problems Algeria refused further deliveries after 15 had been received and Russia instead supplied Algeria with 16 Su-30s.

Algeria received its most recent batch of Su-30s in 2016/17. The Su-30MKA operated by the Algerian Air Force is a specialised variant of the Su-30MK fitted with a mix of French and Russian avionics. The former includes a head-up and multifunction displays manufactured by the Thales Group and Sagem of France.

In 2016, Algeria was interested in acquiring the Su-34 strike aircraft from Russia but it seems little came of those discussions.

Darek Liam

Darek Liam is the North African editor for AMB, where he writes about the intersection of Technology and national security. He has been covering defense and national security issues for more than a decade, previously as African Union correspondent.