Global industrial gases company Air Liquide has increased its presence in Southeastern Europe by creating a subsidiary in Serbia.
Over the past three years, Serbia has been one of Europe’s fastest growing economies with an average annual GDP growth of 7.3%. It is the most industrialized country in ex-Yugoslavia. Its major growth drivers are telecommunications, construction and transport, with a recent upswing of industrial production. Its strategic position allows good access to transportation corridors between Western and South-Eastern Europe and Turkey.
The move is part of Air Liquide’s goal to establish a stronger presence in the region. Since the end of last year, Air Liquide has operated an Air Separation Unit in Romania and is supplying cylinder and liquid gases to a major shipyard in South-Eastern Romania. It will soon commission its own acetylene production and filling center in the region.
By the end of 2007, Air Liquide Bulgaria will also start up a new Air Separation Unit with liquid production close to Sofia, which will support the development of local industrial activities.
The accession of Romania and Bulgaria to the European Union has facilitated the logistic supply chain in the region and provides synergies with the well-established operations of Air Liquide Hellas in Greece.