Property, plant and equipment

Networks and network-related assets in the regulated domain

Networks and network-related assets in the regulated domain are measured at fair value less accumulated depreciation and impairment.

The fair value of these network assets is measured by regular appraisals performed by independent external valuers. If in the interim the fair value differs significantly from the carrying amount, the revaluation will be adjusted. An increase in the carrying amount as a result of a revaluation of networks and network-related assets in the regulated domain is recognised directly in equity through the revaluation reserve. A reduction in the carrying amount is also recognised directly in equity through the revaluation reserve up to the amount of any previous increase in the same asset. If that figure is exceeded, the excess is recognised as a charge in the income statement.

The difference between depreciation based on the revalued carrying amount and depreciation based on the original cost, less deferred tax, is transferred periodically from the revaluation reserve to retained earnings.

Other property, plant and equipment

Other property, plant and equipment is recognised at cost less accumulated depreciation and impairment. Cost comprises the initial acquisition price plus all directly attributable costs. Cost of assets constructed by the company comprises the cost of materials and services, direct labour and other directly attributable costs. Contributions towards cost from third parties and government grants are deducted from the cost, provided they are not contributions from customers. Cost includes an estimate of the present value of the cost of dismantling, demolishing and removing the item when it ceases to be used and of restoring the site on which it is located, if there is a legal or constructive obligation to do so. Financing costs (interest) directly attributable to the purchase, construction or production of an eligible asset are recognised in cost. If an asset comprises multiple significant components with differing useful lives, these components are recognised separately.

Expenditure incurred subsequent to initial recognition

Expenses incurred at a later date are only added to the carrying amount of an asset if and to the extent that the condition of the asset is improved compared to the originally formulated performance standards. Repair and maintenance are recognised through the income statement in the period in which the costs are incurred.

Depreciation

The depreciation charge for each period is recognised through the income statement using the straight-line method based on estimated useful life, taking into account the estimated residual value. Useful lives and residual values are reassessed annually and any changes are recognised prospectively. Land, sites and assets under construction are not depreciated.

The following useful lives are applied:

Category

Useful economic life in years

Buildings

25 - 50

Machinery and equipment

10 - 50

Networks, regulated

10 - 50

Other operating assets

3 - 25