Coming off losses in Indian and Japan, the Eurofighter Typhoon consortium is now looking to the Middle East to build up its backlog of orders for the fighter.

The goal is to secure the sale of 12 Typhoons to Oman in September or October after January’s formal release of the request for proposals. The program is valued at more than £2 billion and could also trigger sales of additional Hawk trainers.

After receiving an RFP from the United Arab Emirates in November – following a falling out between the government and front-runner Dassault Aviation and its Rafale entrant – BAE Systems is preparing a full-fledged campaign in the country, suggests Alan Garwood, group business development director. The offering has received “big encouragement” from the UAE, Garwood tells financial analysts as the company released full-year results last week, noting there is “all to play for.” Boeing has also been briefing the UAE on the F/A-18E/F as a possible fighter choice.

BAE Systems also has its eye on a bid in Qatar and on Malaysia in Asia, but those competitions are not expected to intensify until later.

Meanwhile, discussions continue with Saudi Arabia over the follow-on contract for 48 more Typhoons on top of the 24 fighters already delivered. Assembly of those aircraft will now take place in the U.K., with Saudi Arabia opting for a maintenance and upgrade facility over a final assembly line. The Saudi government also plans to take the last 24 aircraft in a Tranche 3 configuration. One of the remaining issues to be sorted out in negotiations is price inflation, with the contract talks having been extended.

Meanwhile, the company continues to keep its eye on the Indian Medium Multirole Combat Aircraft (MMRCA) competition, where Dassault Aviation was named the lowest-cost compliant bidder. There is precedent for talks between the lowest-cost bidder and the government to stall, and the runner-up lowest-cost bidder – in this case the Eurofighter Typhoon – to win the final contract, BAE Systems CEO Ian King notes.

BAE Systems is now working with Cassidian, the German EADS unit leading the campaign, to improve the offer on the table in case New Delhi turns away from Rafale. The goal is to sharpen the proposal “without slashing margins,” says Guy Griffiths, BAE Systems managing director, international. “We and the U.K. government will be pushing hard to get our German partners to move forward,” King adds.