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Gazprom, Air Liquide Ink Deal

Russia's top natural gas producer, Gazprom, and France's Air Liquide signed a memorandum of understanding with a view to jointly develop helium deposits in eastern Siberia, Gazprom said Tuesday.

"According to terms of the MOU, Air Liquide and Gazprom Export intend to study forms of strategic cooperation such as joint production, transportation, storage and marketing of helium within the Helium Project framework," Gazprom's exporting arm, Gazprom Export, said in a statement.

Gazprom has signed several such deals, including with Japan's Matheson, to tap vast reserves of helium, which is used in a range of industries, such as aviation, aerospace, electronics, nuclear power and health care.

Gazprom's new helium production facility in Siberia is scheduled to start producing liquid helium by about 2018.

(Reuters)

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