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Air Liquide Signs Major Contract with BOE Chengdu

On Aug. 15, Air Liquide entered into a long-term agreement with Chengdu BOE Optoelectronics Technology Co. Ltd, the new 4.5-generation TFT-LCD fab of Beijing Oriental Electronics Technology Group (BOE). Under the terms of the agreement, Air Liquide will supply nitrogen, oxygen, hydrogen and argon to the customer. Our gas supply will undergo 2 phases – as of March 2009, the customer will be supplied through an on-site APSA, and starting from 2011, through an ASU which Air Liquide will invest during the coming years. In addition to bulk gas, Air Liquide will also provide Specialty Gas Equipment & Installation (E&I) and Total Gas Management (TGM) to Chengdu BOE. It’s the first time that Air Liquide China is entrusted to provide a global solution & service to the same electronic customer. 

Founded in 1993, BOE is currently the largest domestic and the world's No. 9 largest TFT-LCD manufacturer, and is also the only enterprise possessing TFT-LCD core technologies. In 2007, BOE started to build a Generation 4.5 TFT-LCD fab in the Western Park of Chengdu Hi-Tech Industrial Development Park with a total investment of 3.1 billion Yuan. The new plant will mainly manufacture TFT-LCD modules below 14.1 inches with a production capacity of 45k pieces (730x920mm) glass per month. First production is scheduled in July, 2009.

Air Liquide and BOE have a long term partnership. Since November of 2005, one of Air Liquide's joint ventures, Hi-Tech Gases (Beijing) Co. Ltd, has been supplying ultra-pure gaseous nitrogen by pipeline to Beijing Optoelectonics Technology Co. Ltd, a subsidiary of BOE Group in Beijing.

Commenting on this new achievement, Mr. Remi Charachon, President & CEO of Air Liquide China said: “Following the successful cooperation with BOE in Beijing, we're glad to be able to supply BOE in Chengdu. The signature of the new contract is of multiple importance to us: first, it will strengthen Air Liquide Electronics position with TFT-LCD manufacturer and increase our TFT-LCD reference portfolio, second, through this project, we will set our first foothold in Chengdu – Sichuan, one of the most strategically important markets in South West China. On top of it, our new investment is in compliance with China's national strategy of developing China's western region. It also illustrates Air Liquide's commitment to contribute to the reconstruction of the Sichuan earthquake area.”

Mr. Wang Jiaheng, Vice President of BOE Group, added:”After fruitful discussion, we have decided to choose Air Liquide as our partner of BOE Chengdu. Air Liquide has understood our needs and shown competitiveness. We are happy to reinforce our partnership with Air Liquide and benefit from its worldwide capabilities.”