Present in Africa and the Middle East for over forty years, Thales has developed strong relations and partnerships with countries in the region and is widely recognised as a reliable partner with local companies.
The Group is a trusted partner in defence and security, transportation, aerospace and space and employs about 1,800 people in the region (including joint ventures).

In each domain of activity, Thales has many references in the region.
  • Transportation: Thales is supplying signalling systems, ticketing solutions and mobile communications for urban and mainline in Algeria, Morocco, Nigeria, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and, in the near future, Qatar. Thales will provide a fully integrated solution for supervision, telecommunication, security and fare collection systems for the new Lusail Transit in Qatar. For the new Doha Metro, Thales will supply advanced Communications Based Train Control (CBTC) signalling. The Dubai metro, the longest driverless metro in the world, is equipped with an entire package of Thales solutions. In Saudi Arabia, Thales is providing signalling systems on the North-South Railway (NSR), the longest European Train Control System (ETCS) in the world.
  • Defence: In February 2015, the Egyptian government ordered twenty-four Rafale’s and one FREMM multi-mission frigate; both extensively equipped with Thales solutions. In May 2015, Qatar also ordered twenty-four Rafale aircrafts from Dassault Aviation. Thales equipment represents 25% of the total value of the Rafale.
  • Security: Thales is providing airport security solutions at Dubai International Airport in the UAE, King Shaka International Airport in Durban, South Africa, and Hamad International Airport in Qatar. Thales is to provide the integrated security for the new international airports of Salalah and Muscat in Oman and will secure the. In Saudi Arabia, critical infrastructures including Mecca & Madinah’s holy mosques are secured by Thales. In March 2015, Thales was awarded a contract by the State of Qatar to secure its new commercial port, the Hamad port, one of the largest and most technologically advanced ports in the world.
  • Aerospace: Thales’ systems are currently managing around 80% of Africa’s air traffic movements, representing thirty countries. Thales is providing In-Flight Entertainment (IFE) systems for seven airlines in Africa. In the Middle East, Thales provides IFE systems to Oman Air, Qatar Airways and Saudia.
  • Space: Thales Alenia Space is a major satellite communications player in the region contributing to world-renowned programmes such as Arabsat, Nilesat, Eutelsat and RascomStar-QAF and Yahsat. Thales’ Falcon Eye programme was signed in 2014 in order to produce two high resolution Pleiades-type satellites – launching in 2017 and 2018.

Local cooperation

Joint ventures and academic partnerships form the core approach for the cooperative relationships in the region. Thales is committed to the progressive development of close cooperation in technology, industrial operations, training and support.

Thales has many joint-ventures in the region:
  • Thales Advanced Solutions in the UAE: a joint venture between Thales and C4 Advanced Solutions (C4AS) focusing on new product development and acting as Thales’ channel to the UAE’s defence market.
  • Thalbat Advanced technologies LLC in the UAE: a joint venture between Thales and Baynuna Aviation Technology providing technical and technological support in the field of on-board electronics.
  • Arab International Optronics (AIO) in Egypt: a joint venture providing local production of optical and optronic equipment.

To reinforce its industrial presence in the region, in December 2015, Thales announced the creation of a new industrial competence centre specialising in metal additive manufacturing (3D printing) in Casablanca, Morocco. The project will begin in 2016, and the 3D printing facility will be fully operational as of 2018.
This competence centre will give us access to a highly capable ecosystem of industrial suppliers specialising in mechanical parts, helping us to meet all our requirements in terms of material, performance and reproducibility for the aerospace market.
In the academic domain, Thales has reinforced its ties through partnerships and Memorandum of Understandings (MoUs):
  • In the UAE, a partnership between the Centre of Excellence for Applied Research and Training (CERT) of the Higher Colleges of Technology (HCT) and Thales has been signed to develop and sustain national assets and human capital in high-tech industry fields.
  • In 2012, Thales and Qatar Airways jointly announced the opening of a technology research, development and training centre at the Qatar Science & Technology Park (QSTP). This laboratory currently houses state-of-the-art IFEC equipment.
  • In 2014, Qatar University and Thales signed a MoU for the academic development, research and training of future Qatari professionals. Thales had already signed an agreement to provide training for cybersecurity management.
  • In Morocco, Thales is sponsoring educational programmes in the aerospace and cybersecurity domains at the Université Internationale de Rabat (UIR).

Key figures

employees in Africa
employees in the middle East
Offices in Africa
Algeria, Egypt, Kenya, Morocco, Nigeria, South Africa
Offices in the Middle East
Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Pakistan, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, UAE



  • United Arab Emirates
  • Africa
  • Morocco
    Thales has served the Moroccan defence, aerospace, transportation and security markets for more than 40 years.
  • South Africa
    Thales’ commitment towards South Africa is built through three main initiatives: the development of the local industry, the commitment to the South African both through the employment of local talents and through corporate social responsibility initiative
  • Egypt
  • Qatar
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Thales in Jordan
    Thales has a footprint in various domains such as Secured Communications, Civil Aviation and Systems for the Air Force.
  • Oman