Inauguration of the new Research and Technology Center in the USA

June 5, 2007

Air Liquide Chairman and CEO Benoît Potier inaugurated the Group's new US Research and Technology Center in Newark, Delaware, this week, in the presence of Ruth-Ann Minner, Governor of Delaware, and numerous VIPs. The Center will be called the “Delaware Research and Technology Center” (DRTC).

Located on a 22-hectare site south of Philadelphia, this center now brings together in a single location the researchers of the previous Chicago Research Center (opened in 1983), the experts of MEDAL (a subsidiary which produces membranes for gas separation and purification), the engineers of the Advanced Technologies Division in the USA (ALATUS) and the teams of the SEPPIC subsidiary (specialty chemicals). There are thus over 80 researchers of 14 different nationalities and with very diverse training backgrounds working on this new campus.

Air Liquide has invested 35 million US dollars in the construction of this center, to supplement the Group's innovation teams in Europe and Asia. The DRTC will devote itself to 12 areas of research: from gas production to applications in electronics, healthcare and food processing, and in particular clean energy.

With more than 20% of the Group's 2006 revenues generated in North America, a very innovation-oriented market, the DRTC aims to double Air Liquide's research effort in the United States and should eventually have 150 staff members. With one-third of global R&D spending, North America remains one of the leaders in technology. This new center will therefore be able to develop stronger partnerships with the Group's major customers, and establish academic cooperation agreements with the best American laboratories and universities. Finally, it will be supported by a multicultural, international pool of scientific and academic talent.

Benoît Potier, Air Liquide Chairman and CEO, stated: "In 2006, Air Liquide devoted more than 200 million euros to innovation, research and technology, and files on average one patent per day each year.
With the establishment of the Delaware Research and Technology Center in North America, we have today in total, in our main geographic zones, nearly 3,000 experts dedicated to three major themes: sustainable development, healthcare and technology.
This center will enable us to profit from stronger synergies between our experts, our customers and the academic world. It will also encourage mobility of the Group's men and women, as well as ideas.
This new initiative supports the Group's ambitions. It strengthens its leadership in the field of innovation, responds to the needs of customers and will accelerate growth for the Group.