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GDF SUEZ SA (2010)

Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements [extract]

Note 22 Service concession arrangements [extract]

The Group manages a large number of concessions as defined by SIC-29 covering drinking water distribution, water treatment, waste collection and treatment, and gas and electricity distribution.

These concession arrangements set out rights and obligations relative to the infrastructure and to the public service, in particular the obligation to provide users with access to the public service. In certain concessions, a schedule is defined specifying the period over which users should be provided access to the public service. The terms of the concession arrangements vary between 10 and 65 years, depending mainly on the level of capital expenditure to be made by the concession operator.

In consideration of these obligations, GDF SUEZ is entitled to bill either the local authority granting the concession (mainly incineration and BOT water treatment contracts) or the users (contracts for the distribution of drinking water or gas and electricity) for the services provided. This right to bill gives rise to an intangible asset, a tangible asset, or a financial asset, depending on the applicable accounting model (see note 1.4.7).

The tangible asset model is used when the concession grantor does not control the infrastructure. For example, this is the case with water distribution concessions in the United States, which do not provide for the return of the infrastructure to the grantor of the concession at the end of the contract (and the infrastructure therefore remains the property of GDF SUEZ), and also natural gas distribution concessions in France, which fall within the scope of law no. 46-628 of April 8, 1946.

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