SHANGHAI, China, January 23, 2007 — Praxair China, a subsidiary of Praxair, Inc. (NYSE: PX) announced today that it has signed a major contract with Jiangsu SOPO (Group) Co., Ltd, for the supply of industrial gases to SOPO's acetic acid plant.
Praxair will design, build, operate, and own a state-of-the-art, large air separation unit (ASU) which is due to come on stream in 2009. The ASU will have a capacity of 3,000 tons of oxygen per day. It will be the largest single plant for sale of gas and also the largest single-train ASU to be built in Asia.
The plant will be integrated with a state-of-the-art, low-cost coal-gasification process for SOPO's acetic acid plant.
In addition to the oxygen produced by the plant, Praxair will also supply liquid oxygen, nitrogen and argon to the rapidly growing market in East China.
Jiangsu SOPO (Group) Co., Ltd, the largest acetic acid producer in China with a 30% market share, is located in Zhenjiang in Jiangsu Province northwest of Shanghai, one of the fastest growing industrial regions in the world. SOPO is focused on improving the cost competitiveness of its feedstocks for acetic acid production. Acetic acid is widely used in the production of adhesives, textiles, paint, paper, polyester fiber and plastic bottles.
"After a thorough evaluation of potential suppliers, SOPO chose Praxair to supply industrial gases for our project. We are confident in Praxair's capability as a world-class supplier to build large plants and in its commitment to high-quality products and service," said Song Qinhua, president and general manager of Jiangsu SOPO (Group) Co., Ltd. "We are deeply impressed with Praxair's professionalism, expertise and company management and look forward to working with Praxair."
"SOPO has developed rapidly in recent years under its new management team to become one of the largest chemical enterprises in China and we are pleased to be their supplier," said David Chow, president, Praxair China. "This is our single largest investment in China to date and will become our flagship site. It demonstrates our confidence in China and expands our leadership position as a gas supplier. More important, integrating oxygen into a coal gasification process allows Praxair to share our technology in advanced control systems and systems integration."
About Praxair China
Praxair China, a subsidiary of Praxair Inc., is a leading global industrial gases supplier in China, serving a diverse group of industries through the production, sale, distribution and application of industrial gases. With over 1000 employees, Praxair China is headquartered in Shanghai and operates 13 wholly owned companies and 11 joint ventures. More information on Praxair China is available on the Internet at www.praxair.com.cn.
With 28,000 employees and operations in more than 30 countries, Praxair, Inc. is a global Fortune 300 company. Praxair is the largest industrial gases company in North and South America, and one of the largest worldwide, with 2005 sales of $7.7 billion. The company supplies atmospheric, process and specialty gases, high-performance coatings and related services and technologies. Praxair products, services and technologies bring productivity and environmental benefits to a wide range of industries: food and beverages, healthcare, semiconductors, chemicals, refining, primary metals and metal fabrication, as well as other areas of general industry. More information on Praxair is available on the Internet at www.praxair.com.
About Jiangsu SOPO
Jiangsu SOPO (Group) Co., Ltd was founded in 1958. With more than 4,200 employees, SOPO has developed into a large scale enterprise focusing on chemicals while actively involved in biochemical and material chemical fields. SOPO has total assets of RMB 3.4 billion (US$450 million) and 2006 sales of RMB 3.73 billion (US$479 million). It is listed as one of the 100 top petrochemical enterprises in China. More information is available on the internet at www.sopo.com.cn.