Consolidated external costs

In 2012, the consolidated external costs of the Group amounted to around Euro 2.63 billion,up slightly with respect to the Euro 2.60 billion in 2011 (+1.4%). The most significant charges, amounting to around Euro 2.08 billion (Euro 2.03 billion in 2011), are those of the energy and the gas sector. These are followed by service costs, totalling Euro 333.1 million, essentially unchanged. During the year in question, costs for materials fell, from Euro 104 million to Euro 62.4 million, due to the minor requirement linked to photovoltaic panels. By contrast, operating expenses increased, from Euro 36 million to Euro 51.6 million, mainly for two reasons: the confirmation by the Council of State of the fine inflicted by the Antitrust Authority on Acea and Suez Environment, for the restrictive agreement on competition in the bid for acquiring the water company Publiacqua, and the higher IMU (municipal property tax) payments.

The rest of the section by contrast illustrates the procurement of goods, services and work, which in 2012 had an overall cost of Euro 518 million, handled by the corporate Purchasing and Logistics Division, for the various Group companies (see 2012 Boundaries  of the related section).