Assurance report of the independent auditor
To: the general meeting of shareholders and the Supervisory Board of TenneT Holding B.V.
We have reviewed the sustainability information in the Integrated Annual Report (hereafter the Report) for the year 2016 of TenneT Holding B.V. at Arnhem (hereafter: TenneT). The scope of our review engagement is described in section ‘Our Scope’.
A review engagement is aimed at obtaining limited assurance.
Based on our procedures performed nothing has come to our attention that causes us to believe that the Report does not present, in all material respects, a reliable and adequate view of:
- the policy and business operations with regard to corporate sustainability; and
- the thereto related events and achievements for the year ended 31 December 2016
In accordance with the Sustainability Reporting Guidelines version G4 of Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) and the supplemental internally applied reporting criteria as disclosed in the reporting principles in the Integrated Annual Report.
Basis for our conclusion
We have performed our review on the Report in accordance with Dutch law, including Dutch Standard 3810N ‘Assurance engagements relating to sustainability reports’. Our responsibilities under this standard are further described in the section “Our responsibilities for the review of the Sustainability Information”.
We believe that the assurance evidence we have obtained is sufficient and appropriate to provide a basis for our conclusion.
We are independent of TenneT in accordance with the “Verordening inzake de onafhankelijkheid van accountants bij assurance-opdrachten (ViORegulation with respect to independence)” and other relevant independence regulations in the Netherlands. This includes that we do not perform any activities that could result in a conflict of interest with our independent assurance engagement. Furthermore, we have complied with the “Verordening gedrags- en beroepsregels accountants (VGBA, Dutch Code of Ethics)”.
The Sustainability Information comprises the chapters “2016 at a glance”, “Letter from the CEO”, “About TenneT”, “Executive Board Report (sections: Society, Markets, Environment, Employees)” in the Integrated Annual Report 2016 of TenneT.
The Sustainability Information includes prospective information such as ambitions, strategy, plans, expectations and projections. Inherent to this information is that the actual results may differ in the future and are therefore uncertain. We do not provide any assurance on the achievability and feasibility of prospective information in the Sustainability Information.
Responsibilities of management
Management is responsible for the preparation of the Sustainability Information in accordance with the Sustainability Reporting Guidelines version G4 and the supplemental internally applied reporting criteria as disclosed in the reporting principles in the Report, including the identification of stakeholders and the definition of material matters. The choices made by management regarding the scope of the Report and the reporting policy are summarized in the reporting principles.
Management is also responsible for such internal control as it determines is necessary to enable the preparation of the Report that are free from material misstatement, whether due to fraud or errors.
Our responsibilities for the review of the Sustainability Information
Our responsibility is to plan and perform the review assignment in a manner that allows us to obtain sufficient and appropriate assurance evidence for our conclusion.
We apply the ‘Nadere voorschriften accountantskantoren ter zake van assurance opdrachten (RA)’ and accordingly maintain a comprehensive system of quality control including documented policies and procedures regarding compliance with ethical requirements, professional standards and other applicable legal and regulatory requirements.
Misstatements can arise from fraud or error and are considered material if, individually or in the aggregate, they could reasonably be expected to influence the economic decisions of users taken on the basis of the Sustainability Information. The materiality affects the nature, timing and extent of our review procedures and the evaluation of the effect of identified misstatements on our conclusion.
A review is aimed to obtain a limited level of assurance. Procedures performed to obtain a limited level of assurance are aimed to determining the plausibility of information and are less extensive than a reasonable assurance engagement. The procedures performed consisted primarily of making inquiries of staff within the entity and applying analytical procedures on the Sustainability Information. The level of assurance obtained in review engagements are therefore substantially less than the assurance obtained in an audit engagement.
We have exercised professional judgement and have maintained professional skepticism throughout the review, in accordance with the Dutch Standard 3810N, ethical requirements and independence requirements.
Our main procedures included the following:
- Performing an external environment analysis and obtaining an understanding of the sector, relevant social issues, relevant laws and regulations and the characteristics of the organization.
- Evaluating the appropriateness of the reporting policy and its consistent application, including the evaluation of the results of the stakeholders’ dialogue and the reasonableness of management’s estimates.
- Evaluating the design and implementation of the reporting systems and processes related to the Sustainability Information in the Report.
- Inquiry management (or relevant staff) at corporate and business division level responsible for the sustainability strategy, policies and performance.
- Inquiry of relevant staff responsible for providing the information in the Report, carrying out internal control procedures on the data and consolidating the data in the Report.
- Visits to TenneT Netherlands & Germany to evaluate the source data and to evaluate the design and implementation of control and validation procedures at local level.
- Analytical review of the data and trend explanations submitted for consolidation at group level.
Rotterdam, 6 March 2017
Ernst & Young Accountants LLP
signed by R.T.H. Wortelboer