Praxair, Inc., Danbury, CT, reported sales in the second quarter 2007 increased to $2.3 billion, 12% above the same period a year ago. Sales growth was led by significant new business coming on-stream in the energy sector and new business in Asia and South America.   ; Profit was up 18% to $291 million.   ; In North America, second-quarter sales reached $1.3 billion, 12% above the prior-year quarter. Sales growth came primarily from higher sales to energy and general manufacturing markets, followed by electronics, healthcare and food and beverage.   ; In Europe, sales in the quarter of $336 million grew 14%, and increased 6% excluding currency effects, as compared to the prior year. Underlying sales growth was broad-based across Europe and most major end markets.   ; In South America, second-quarter sales of $393 million grew 16% from the prior-year quarter, and 8% excluding currency effects. Underlying sales growth came from most major end markets including general manufacturing, metals and food and beverage.   ; Sales in Asia grew 15% to $179 million, from $155 million in the year-ago quarter. Higher sales in China, India and Korea, primarily to metals and electronics markets, drove the increase.   ; Praxair Surface Technologies'sales in the quarter grew to $131 million, up 12% from the prior-year quarter, excluding the effects of a business divestiture and currency. Sales growth came primarily from higher sales of OEM aviation coatings and industrial coatings for the power turbine market.   ; Praxair is an industrial gases company, with 2006 sales of $8.3 billion.