Foster Wheeler has announced Q1 2006 results for the period ended 31 March 2006.

Net earnings increased to $14.6m for the first quarter of 2006, compared with $1.2m in the first quarter of 2005. The Q1 net earnings include pre- and after-tax expenses of $1.8m, or three cents per basic share, as a result of the company's adoption of SFAS No. 123R.

For the first quarter of 2006, operating revenues increased by 24 per cent to $645.8m, up from $523.1m a year ago. First-quarter 2006 EBITDA (earnings before income taxes, interest expense, depreciation and amortization) increased by 47 per cent to $45.9m, up from $31.2m in the first quarter of 2005.

New orders increased this quarter by 232 per cent to $1.53bn, up from $460m a year ago. The company continued to build backlog, which increased to $4.55bn at the end of the first quarter of 2006, up 23 per cent from $3.69bn at the end of the fourth quarter of 2005, and up 138 per cent from $1.91bn a year ago.

Chairman Raymond J. Milchovich, said: "I am very pleased with the progress we have made since the year-ago period in terms of earnings, EBITDA, bookings and backlog.

"With the successful completion of our debt reduction programme, as announced on April 25, 2006, our capital structure fully supports our subsidiaries' ability to compete with anyone in their space, and win. I believe that we have the skills, products and the people to capitalize on the significant opportunities offered by an extremely active engineering and construction (E&C) market and a strengthening power market."