At the end of business on 30 September 2006, Air Liquide's revenues for gas and services amounted to €7,188m, an increase of 6.4 per cent on a comparable basis versus the first nine months of 2005.

In the third quarter 2006, gas and services revenue increased 7.2 per cent to €2,367m versus 2005 on a comparable basis. The quarter was driven by good progress in the Americas and Asia and with more mixed growth in Europe.

Benoit Potier, chairman and ceo of Air Liquide, says: "This good third quarter is in line with and confirms the continuing positive trends we have seen in the first half. Revenue growth is strong in Asia and the Americas but more varied in Europe, depending on the segments."

Revenues for the third quarter 2006 were €1,249m, an increase of 5.4 per cent. Growth was driven by large industries, healthcare and electronics, whilst industrial customers activity remained stable.

In the third quarter of 2006, revenues in the Americas zone amounted to €640m, an increase of 8.5 per cent, a slight acceleration versus the first six months. Growth rates were similar in North and South America. Industrial customers continue to deliver sustained growth, whilst large industries revenue rose substantially in the third quarter.

In the third quarter 2006, revenues in the Americas zone amounted to €434m, an increase of 10 per cent. This growth resulted from a combination of strong presence in advanced economies such as Japan, where growth was six per cent, and continues development in emerging countries including China, South Korea, and South-East Asia. All business lines contributed to the growth.

Africa continued to record double-digit growth, driven by good industrial customers activity in South Africa.