DANBURY, Conn., February 9, 2004 –– Praxair, Inc. (NYSE:PX) has received the highest rating for corporate governance from GovernanceMetrics International (GMI) for the second consecutive time. GMI is a leading independent governance research and ratings agency. Only 22 companies out of a total of 2,100 companies worldwide received the top rating, and only eight received the top score in two consecutive rating cycles.
GMI's rating system covers more than 600 data points in seven categories, including board accountability, disclosure, executive compensation, shareholder rights, ownership base, takeover provisions and corporate behavior and social responsibility. GMI ratings are used by institutional investors in Europe and North America for risk evaluation and portfolio screening, among other purposes.
"We consider corporate governance to be a critical measure of Praxair's performance and are committed to maintaining our leadership in this area," said Dennis H. Reilley, chairman and chief executive officer of Praxair.
Praxair is the largest industrial gases company in North and South America, and one of the largest worldwide, with 2003 sales of $5.6 billion. The company produces, sells and distributes atmospheric and process gases, and high-performance surface coatings. Praxair products, services and technologies bring productivity and environmental benefits to a wide variety of industries, including aerospace, chemicals, food and beverage, electronics, energy, healthcare, manufacturing, metals and others. More information on Praxair is available on the Internet at www.praxair.com.