Air Liquide has announced that its revenues for the first half of 2006 have amounted to €5,483m, an increase of 8.8 per cent amid to growth in demand for oxygen and hydrogen.

On a comparable basis (excluding currency, natural gas and the deconsolidation of liquid chemicals in the US), growth was six per cent.

In the second quarter of 2006, revenues amounted to €2,710m, an increase of 5.6 per cent against the second quarter of 2005.

Gas and Services activities rose by 7.1 per cent in the second quarter, and by nine per cent over the first half.

Chairman and CEO Benoît Potier, said: \\$quot;The second quarter, like the first, delivered continued growth in all our business lines. We benefited from sustained demand for oxygen from our steel and chemicals customers, and hydrogen, from our refinery clients. Furthermore, an acceleration in the electronics sector and strong momentum in the US and Asian markets, particularly Japan, contributed to assuring solid growth.

\\$quot;For the coming months, we anticipate continued growth in our electronics activities, ongoing momentum in Asia and the Americas, as well as in healthcare, and higher hydrogen volumes linked with the start-ups of two important new projects.

\\$quot;In view of activity levels in the first half, a favourable outlook in our markets and current productivity programs, we remain confident and maintain our target for the year of growth in comparable net earnings close to that of 2005.\\$quot;