Corporate social responsibility report

Public transport is the future

The main goal for the NSB Group is to create values for the owner and society through efficient, accessible, safe and environmentally friendly passenger and freight transport.

The Paris Agreement on climate change, adopted on 12 December 2015, provides a clear direction for future global climate goals. Companies and society will have to adapt to these new climate targets. The NSB Group wants to contribute, as reflected in our strategic objectives:

The main goal for the NSB Group is to create values for the owner and society through efficient, accessible, safe and environmentally friendly passenger and freight transport.

The Government proposed in White Paper no. 13 (2014-2015) that by 2030 Norway should cut greenhouse gas emissions by at least 40 percent compared with 1990. Amongst efforts to reduce Norwegian emissions, the government points to five specific priority areas, of which one is reduced emissions from the transport sector. Transport accounted for 26 percent of total emissions in 2013 and thus is key to reducing climate change and achieving sustainable development.

Greenhouse gas emissions in the transport sector can be reduced through transition to transport modes that emit less, by curbing the need for transport or by lowering emissions from a given transport type. The government says in the White Paper that they will help more people choose either public transport, walking or cycling. It is also important that urban development patterns and transportation systems encourage development of compact cities and towns, reducing transportation needs and promoting climate-friendly forms of transport.

The NSB Group can and will contribute in significantly reducing greenhouse gas emissions in the transport sector. Our contribution will be delivered by planning and implementing increased capacity on public transport to/from home and work, developing public transport hubs and adjacent residential and commercial buildings, and delivering sustainable rail-freight solutions. Central elements here are a more attractive and efficient timetable in Eastern Norway implemented between December 2012 and December 2015, bringing 71 new trains into service to date, and intensive real estate development in and around transport hubs.

These efforts have resulted in a considerable increase in traffic volume in 2015 too, with an increase in train journeys by 5.7 % to 72.4 million, up by 26 % compared to 2011. In Norway our bus traffic declined by 5.6 % but Sweden showed a 3 % increase in 2015.

Key milestones in 2015

  • From the route change on December 13 the commuter line west of Oslo between Lysaker and Sandvika reopened after upgrading of stations and tracks and a new turning branch at Høvik. The route network which started up in 2012 is now completed, incorporating three upgraded local stations Høvik, Blommenholm and Stabekk.
  • The growth in journeys by passenger train was 5.7 %
  • Energy consumption per train seat km. was reduced by 4.5 % compared to 2014
  • The proportion of buses which are either hybrid, use biodiesel or run on natural gas has almost doubled to 35 %
  • The office building in Munkedamsveien 62 at Filipstad, Oslo west, was completed and classified as BREEAM NOR Excellent
  • Energy consumption by our properties has been reduced by 5 %, measured in in kWh/m2
  • The NSB Group continues to support SOS Children´s Villages, donating to the Siteki village in Swaziland in lieu of Christmas presents to our employees.

Corporate responsibility for the NSB Group

As part of our group policy NSB has established corporate guidelines for social responsibility as well as ethical guidelines. We follow the following basic principles regarding social responsibility:

  • Every company manager has to ensure that their company safeguards social responsibility as an integral part of running their business
  • Social responsibility shall be incorporated into our strategic foundation and values
  • We support the principles stated in FN’s Declaration on human rights and ILOs core conventions
  • We are active in preventing all forms of corruption
  • We shall actively contribute in the reduction of the environmental impact of the transport sector
  • We publicise annually the status and development of social responsibility in our CSR report

The NSB Group has reported on environmental and social responsibility since the early 2000’s. The report and its emphasis has evolved based on materiality considerations related to the challenges facing the company and the expectations of stakeholders. As other large enterprises the NSB Group reports CSR according to the Norwegian Accounting Act § 3-3 paragraphs (a) and (c). The report is also in part based on the requirements of the GRI (Global Reporting Initiative G4 – a voluntary standard for reporting corporate responsibility) and the UIC SIR (Sustainability Indicators, Rail).

Customer relations 

Traffic volume development

The first major schedule change in Eastern Norway in recent history came in 2012. In December 2015, a new step in facilitating more services for more customers was implemented, reopening the Blommenholm, Høvik and Stabekk stations on the Drammen line, west of Oslo, with 4 departures per hour. Changes implemented since 2012, together with the introduction of many new trains gave a 5.7 % traffic increase in the last 12 months, and in 2015 72.4 million journeys, of which 67.1mill. in Norway. 71 new trains are now in service with 26 % more traffic than in 2011.

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Bus operations saw the number of journeys reduced to 109.6 million. This reflects the reduction in ownership share of the operations in Denmark. Journeys in Norway and Sweden totalled 75.3 (79.8) and 34.2 (33.2) million, representing a change of – 5.6 % and + 3 % respectively. This was mainly due to changes in route production.

Freight volume stabilized in 2015, although it is still considerably lower than the peak year of 2008. Improved delivery quality has encouraged customers to choose to send their cargo by train. However many railway lines have been prone to flooding, landslides and infrastructure failures in 2015 too. Last year 155 freight trains were cancelled due to unforeseen closures, half that of 2013. Learning from 2015 shows that increased demand for rail-freight presupposes stable infrastructure so that customers can have more confidence in punctual delivery.

Reputation and customer satisfaction

The operational entities within the NSB Group conduct annual surveys on customer satisfaction. These give a good picture of how NSB´s service and quality is perceived, and give us feedback on which areas we need to improve.


Survey results for autumn 2015 showed a new peak for the CSI for passenger trains at 73 points. Customers report that they are satisfied with, inter alia, information, staff on board, comfort on board and ticket purchase, but want improvements related to punctuality, route choice and the handling of disruptions. A customer satisfaction index under 60 is considered weak, over 70 as good.

Customer satisfaction measured on the NSB Oslo-Gjøvik line (Gjøvikbanen) is relatively stable, and customers are in general very pleased with the service. The index reached 72 points, up 1 percentage point from 2014.

Customer satisfaction for buses includes the express-bus products TIMEkspressen, the airport bus in Trondheim, Bus4You and Nettbuss express in Norway and Sweden. Customer satisfaction is stable and high.

Punctuality

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NSB passenger train punctuality was 88.6 % in 2015. This is an improvement of 0.3 % percentage points compared to 2014 but below the target of 90 %. Regularity was at 90.5. A local train is considered on time if it arrives at its destination within three minutes and 59 seconds of schedule. For long-distance trains the margin is five minutes and 59 seconds.

Total hours delayed which affected NSB passenger trains in 2015 amounted to 11,606, a reduction of 1 % compared to 2014. For NSB passenger trains infrastructure delays are still most prevalent, accounting for 4,978 hours (43 %) compared to 5,886 (50 %) in 2014, a reduction of 15 %. NSB-related delay hours at 20 % of the total were unchanged from 2014.

NSB related delays were mainly due to long stops at stations (44 %) and failures by rolling stock (30 %). Delay hours due to long stops at stations were reduced by 4 % from 2014 and delay hours due to failures by rolling stock has increased by 4 %.

Our passenger train operational staff have an ongoing program of technical improvements and maintenance to reduce faults. In 2015 the program focused on station dwell-time in collaboration with the National Rail Administration (Jernbaneverket) to improve punctuality generally and especially during rush-hour in the Oslo area. This work continues in 2016.

Our subsidiary in Sweden, Svenska Tågkompaniet AB, attained a punctuality of 90 % in 2015, compared to 88.4 % in 2014. NSB Gjøvikbanen AS (the Oslo-Gjøvik subsidiary) had an average punctuality of 84 % in 2015, down from 89 % in 2014.

Infrastructure problems affected operations in 2015 as in previous years. Several lines were closed for shorter or longer periods due to flooding, landslides and bad weather. This resulted in the cancellation of 155 freight trains compared to 128 in 2014. Despite this, freight train punctuality was higher than the goal of 90 %, and ended on 92 % (90 % in 2014) within the 15 minute delay margin.

The Environment 

Strategy

The NSB Group has incorporated environmental issues into its strategies, goals and plans. One of the company’s key strategic objectives is to prevent harm to both people and the environment. As a part of this, a strategic environmental plan was developed for the period 2011–2015. The main objectives of this plan were:

  • Certify group businesses in accordance with ISO-14001
  • Develop environmental competence and awareness in our employees
  • Further develop an eco-friendly rolling stock
  • Use environmentally friendly and innovative products in our businesses
  • Implement energy optimization and resource conservation
  • Renovate previously polluted sites
  • Increase the waste recycling fraction

This plan contained policies and guidelines on how the work should be accomplished, and standards for measurement indicators related to the environment.

A new environment strategy is under development and will be finalised in 2016.

New international and national climate targets

The Paris Agreement on climate change was adopted on 12 December 2015. It provides a clear direction for future global climate action; companies and society generally will have to adapt to the new climate targets. The agreement aims for global emissions to peak as soon as possible. The overall objective is to limit global warming to “well below 2 degrees.”

The Norwegian government proposed in its White Paper no. 13 (2014–2015) that Norway by 2030 cut greenhouse gas emissions by at least 40 percent compared with 1990. Amongst efforts to reduce Norwegian emissions, the government points to five specific priority areas, of which one is reduced emissions from the transport sector. Transport accounted for 26 percent of total emissions in 2013 and thus is key to reducing climate change and achieving sustainable development.

Greenhouse gas emissions from the transport sector can be reduced through transition to transport modes with lower emissions, by reducing the need for transport or through lowering emissions from each individual transport mode. The government says in the White Paper that they will make it easier for more people to choose public transport, walking and cycling.

The NSB Group plays an important part in reducing the transport sector’s environmental footprint

The NSB Group’s rail, bus and real estate operations play an important part in facilitating a shift towards public transport. Our passenger rail and bus operations build on a substantial and sustainable route network to and from transport hubs. Our real estate operations develop hubs that make it possible to live and work near good public transport services. Our freight operations deliver freight transport by rail, which is both energy efficient and sustainable, and avoids drawbacks associated with freight transport by road.

The NSB Group aims to reduce its own energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions through more energy- efficient trains, buses and real estate and a focus on energy efficient driving. This has yielded good results. The development of hub-adjacent houses and commercial property can reduce the need for travel.

Passenger train operations in NSB AS, train maintenance operations in Mantena and all operating companies in Nettbuss are environmentally certified in accordance with ISO-14001.

Energy consumption

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Energy efficiency, passenger rail

From 2013 to 2017, NSB has set itself the goal of reducing power consumption by 15 %. With an energy expenditure of 44.6 Wh / gtkm in 2015, NSB is on track to reach its target. New, efficient trains and a focus on energy-efficient driving are central here. The latter will form the basis for new basic training for train drivers, together with My energy. My energy is an application for train drivers that monitors energy consumption during train trips, to understand better how driving style affects power consumption, and thus save energy.

Energy consumption, freight trains

In 2015 the energy consumption per tonne-kilometre was reduced by 4.3 %. A project on energy conservation will be established in 2016, with the introduction of ECO-driving during autumn 2016. At terminals the goal is to reduce idling emissions, with 4 diesel trucks at Alnabru, Oslo, replaced by 4 electric vehicles.

Freight transport by rail has an appreciably smaller environmental impact than the same transport by road. It relieves roads of a substantial number of long trailer journeys, and thereby contributes towards lower emissions, fewer road accidents and traffic jams. During 2015 NSB freight operations relieved the roads of about 186 000 long trailer trips, i.e.600 trailers per day.

Energy consumption, bus operations

The introduction of a new fleet management system, which amongst other things registers fuel consumption, idling and driving patterns, shows potential savings in fuel consumption and local emissions. Use of alternative fuels such as natural gas, biogas and biodiesel has been extended considerably, and the same applies to hybrid buses. 35 % of our buses have been run on alternative energy in 2015, a significant increase from last year.

Ground contamination

Some minor diesel leakages at freight terminals occurred during 2015, but the contaminated soil has now been removed. When developing our properties these are first examined and if necessary cleansed of pollution. In connection with a building project at Grefsen station 5,507 tons of polluted material was removed in 2015. This program of eliminating ground contamination from our real estate sites continues into 2016.

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The NSB Group currently purchase all electrical power for trains from the Norwegian National Rail Administration (Jernbaneverket) with a certificate of origin guarantee. This is not in itself an incentive to save on energy, but by purchasing these guarantees NSB helps to support the producers of renewable energy. In its greenhouse gas emission calculations up until 2014 NSB used zero emissions for electrical trains based on the purchase of these origin guarantees. From 2014, we have used a new universal standard for computing energy consumption and gas emissions for transport services, and the emissions for 2013 are restated. The basis for calculating our electricity emissions is now the Nordic electricity mix, and for diesel emissions “well to wheel”.

Management of waste

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Both the waste in tonnes and the recycling rate have decreased in 2015 compared with previous years. This is mostly due to the previous disposal of freight wagons with a high recycling rate. The real estate and train maintenance operations have the greatest amount of waste, and define the potential reduction in waste and recycling rate. The recycling rate from real estate operations increased from 31.9 to 35.7% last year, while the train maintenance operations reached a recycling rate of 77.3 %, about the same level as in 2014.

Safety and security

The safety and security policy of the NSB Group states that:

  • Our operations shall not cause serious harm to either people, the environment or assets
  • Operational entities shall proactively prevent unwanted incidents and have the necessary competence to handle critical situations. The core business shall as far as possible stay operational even in threatening or crisis situations
  • Learning from experience and continual improvement shall be facilitated. Information regarding safety and security should be easy to understand and accessible. No one is to be penalized for reporting faults or problems
  • Safety and security activities should be customized to each individual operation and developed to meet new requirements

Nobody should die or be seriously injured as a result of the group’s business. Line management is responsible for ensuring that employees at all levels build an attitude that prioritizes safety in all circumstances. If safety goals are not met or established safety rules not adhered to, the line manager is to take corrective action.

The realm of traffic safety includes reporting of adverse incidents, their investigation, emergency exercises, risk analysis and monitoring results. Together these provide the basis for defining critical conditions and the steps for correction and improvement.

Security policy for railway operations is described in separate governing documents.

The figure shows accidents, injuries and fatalities related to group transport activities.

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Injuries and fatalities

No passengers died as a result of the NSB Group’s transport activities in 2015. One third party and one employee died in bus collisions, and five third parties died in level crossing accidents. 21 third parties were seriously injured, including 20 within the bus segment, mainly due to collisions.

Accidents

For the NSB Group there have been 15 incidents, deemed railway accidents in accordance with regulations, during 2015. The causes of many of the incidents in 2015 are beyond the group’s direct influence. Incidents are systematically recorded and reported to the infrastructure manager. Traffic safety measured through performance management and risk management remains a high priority and is used to reduce risk both internally and in collaboration with others.

Our traffic safety record overall is rated as satisfactory and goal achievement is considered acceptable. NSB’s operations are conducted in compliance with external and internal requirements as assessed by management follow-up.

Traffic safety, bus operations

Bus operations transport large numbers of passengers daily, with the responsibility to ensure that everyone arrives safely, and no other road users suffer damage of any kind. As part of its road safety activities, the bus operation has started certification to ISO 39001 (traffic safety). Nettbuss Mid Norway, Nettbuss South and Nettbuss Sweden are already certified to this standard which, together with driving behaviour monitoring, should help reduce accidents.

Employee relations

Our strategic goal is for the NSB Group to have highly qualified and motivated employees. As a personnel intensive service organization NSB should aim to be an attractive workplace, ensuring a professional and conducive working environment with open, honest and consistent communication both internally and externally in order to create trust and credibility.

The NSB Group has established a personnel policy. Policy manuals are prepared in each operational entity that contain guidelines, policies and standards for handling personnel issues.

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The NSB Group had by year-end 12 668 employees. The equivalent number of man-years was 10,439, a reduction of 5 %, mainly due to a change in ownership of bus operations in Denmark.

Employee satisfaction is at 71 on a scale of 0–100. This is one percentage point above the average for Norwegian companies, and 5 percentage points above the average in the transport sector. We see signs that satisfaction in the various businesses and staff areas in the group are affected by the ongoing change projects.On the basis of survey results measures have been enacted to improve satisfaction in the areas where performance is too weak. The employee satisfaction survey itself was modified slightly in 2015, and the figure for 2014 has been restated accordingly.

Absence due to sickness last year was at 7.9 %, about the same level as last year. High sick-leave was mostly incurred through strain injuries and inconvenient working hours, and the main measures to reduce long-term absence are adjustments to the work place and shift working.

For passenger rail employees LTI (Lost Time Injuries) fell to 3.8 per million working hours while TRI (Total Recordable Injuries) was also lower at 5.9. These ratios were 4.2 and 6.5 respectively in 2014, a 9.5 % lower LTI and a 9.2 % lower TRI.

Both Rom Eiendomsutvikling AS, (parent company for real estate operations), and NSB Gjøvikbanen AS which operates the Oslo-Gjøvik line, had zero LTI and TRI.

The LTI and TRI ratios for train maintenance operations were at 15.2 and 18 respectively. The goal is to reduce the number of injuries, partly by means of annual safety seminars for all employees.

For the freight train operations, LTI was 12.7 and TRI 25.4. For the bus operations LTI was 4.5 and TRI 6.2. These ratios were higher than the previous year, mainly due to improved reporting procedures.

Human rights, labour rights and anti-corruption activities

In the NSB Group we have established ethical guidelines and guidelines for social responsibility covering for example human rights, labour rights and anti-corruption measures.

Most of our activities take place in Norway, with links to Sweden too. Management of human rights and labour rights are well taken care of through formal procedures that employees and management have established to deal with such questions. Most of our employees have rights that are well defined within collective agreements and understandings. Employees are represented on the Board, and working environment committees are established and hold regular meetings.

The percentage of our employees covered by collective agreements varies between businesses from 84 % to almost 100 %. Most of the remaining employees have individual agreements.

Our operations aim for a high ethical standard as described in our ethical guidelines, with ethical requirements on our suppliers in force.

During 2015 the NSB Group carried out a large internal control project. One of the main elements was risk analysis regarding possible corruption or irregularities as well as a data analysis and analysis of close links between our employees and suppliers. We found no significant violations of our policies or procedures. These analyses are the basis for the reduction of risk and mistakes. Routines, systems and practice will be changed and improved where necessary, and the effects monitored.

In the passenger train, freight, train maintenance and real estate operations ethical guidelines are a part of the employment contract for new employees. For the bus operations ethical guidelines form part of the manager’s manual and the personnel handbook, and are also linked to the drivers manual.

Key personnel in all our businesses were trained in anti-corruption work as part of the internal control project. The freight business has also introduced e-training on our ethical guidelines.

A process has been started for self-declaration by the Board and top management regarding ethics and social responsibility as well as any association to other legal entities that have or may have a commercial relationship with the NSB Group.

Supply chain

The NSB Group buys goods and services as well as fixed assets for about 8 billion NOK a year. The NSB Group has approved governing documents and guidelines related to group purchasing. The procurement function is set up to ensure that the NSB Group is using its purchasing power to achieve optimum terms, and that the agreements and contracts NSB signs with external suppliers safeguard NSB’s interests in a satisfactory manner. This function is also responsible for corporate support, consulting and decision support in addition to following up the cost and legal aspects of large or strategically important contracts for the NSB Group.

Based on group- and business area procurement plans for 2015, we carried out a risk analysis for social and corporate responsibility for all significant agreements. Risk assessment of the procurement plans for 2015 showed five contract areas that may be at risk of violating ethical or social requirements. These are:

  • Uniform production
  • Ingredients in the night train comfort package
  • Cleaning services
  • Building construction
  • IT (programming resources abroad)

No significant violations of either ethical or social requirements have been found. These risk analyses have however provided a basis for reducing this risk, e.g. using external contractors and consultants to audit and possibly in monitoring suppliers.

Equality

Based on statutory requirements and NSB’s ethical guidelines, promoting equality is given substance in the group personnel policy. It states among other things, that:

  • All employees in the NSB Group are equal regardless of sex, age, disability, sexual orientation, or religious, ethnic or cultural background
  • We seek a broad and varied range of leaders and employees, whose individual skills and ability are valued and respected
  • A more equal proportion of male and female employees is desirable at all levels, and will be emphasized in recruitment and in skills development
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The proportion of women in the NSB Group is 17 %, ranging from 7 to 44 %, depending on operation. On the Board of Directors for the NSB Group, the proportion of women representing shareholders is 60 %, while the proportion in top management of the various operations varies from zero to 33 %. There are female CEO’s in our subsidiaries NSB Trafikkservice AS and Finse Forsikring AS. The NSB Group top management team included no women in 2015.

The average proportion of female managers is 17 %, on a level with the share of female employees generally. The proportion of women with personnel responsibility is 20 %. The average wage for women varies between the different operations, from 77 to 106 % of the average male wage, mainly dependent on position and seniority. The average working hours for women is slightly lower than for men, except for the freight and train maintenance operations. The difference in working hours is mainly due to the fact that a larger proportion of female employees work part time.

We aim to increase the proportion of women in middle- and top management in the long term by, for example:

  • Identifying and publishing a number of jobs held by females as role models
  • Encouraging women to apply when recruiting for male-dominated jobs. In several business areas, it is standard practice always to interview female applicants who fill eligibility requirements
  • Applying moderate gender quotas in recruitment for a number of job categories in which male dominance is especially great
  • Managerial focus on curbing sexist attitudes and behavior
  • Introducing systematic processes for management evaluation and succession planning, focusing on female representation
  • Mobilization of talented female employees and managers in the group’s ongoing change program
  • Prioritization of women in group management development
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The proprtion of immigrants in the NSB Group is 13.5 %, up from 12.2 % last year. The largest immigrant share is in railcar cleaning at 35.3 %, while the lowest, 3.6 %, is in rail freight. The immigrant share is increasing in all group operations.

NSB’s goal is greater employee diversity in the group, but it is difficult to achieve. The biggest challenge here is the non-fulfillment of linguistic requirements. When the intake of new recruits is limited, it also becomes more difficult to expand diversity in higher positions in the group, since we largely develop and promote internally.

Key action areas are:

  • Thorough and serious treatment of suspected or reported discriminatory behaviour
  • An emphasis on NSB’s policy of diversity and equality when publicizing the vast majority of vacancies
  • Highlighting role models with immigrant background on the group´s website
  • For most vacancies, making it a regular practice to call for interview at least one candidate with immigrant background
  • Managerial focus on ethnic diversity as a value added

We have established a notification channel in accordance with the requirements of the Working Environment Act. We received no formal notification of discriminatory behaviour in 2015, and only one in 2014.

Stakeholder inclusiveness and materiality

One of the main elements in the international GRI standard and in the Norwegian accounting act on corporate responsibility is a description of how the organization has identified and involved stakeholders. The operational entities in the NSB Group have in 2015 made a stakeholder analysis based on an assessment of importance, and grouped stakeholders according to the following criteria:

  • The Norwegian Government as owner
  • National and local authorities
  • Suppliers and other partners
  • Customers
  • Employees and unions
  • Interest groups and local communities

For each of these categories we have logged the type of dialogue, the number of meetings and their scope. The overview shows which major issues operational entities and interest groups have discussed.

Formal meetings and other contact with interest groups ensure that each entity in the NSB Group has an updated knowledge of stakeholders and their needs, contributing to better management decisions. 

The social mission of the NSB Group and it’s businesses, as contained in the articles of association, stakeholder requirements and the annual strategic plan details prioritized areas of corporate responsibility. Materiality criteria are the basis for the CSR reports and their design – from the 2000’s to this report for 2015.

The Annual Report and the CSR report for 2015 describe which goals the NSB Group believes are central to our corporate responsibility i.e.:

  • To contribute to better public transport solutions for Norway’s future
  • To provide a comprehensive route network
  • Building on and near transport hubs – closer and smarter
  • Economic sustainability
  • That we should not cause serious harm to people, property or the environment
    Increased energy efficiency

These goals will remain central in future. In 2016 we will concentrate on improving methodology as suggested in the GRI standard on stakeholders and materiality. Stakeholder analysis has been the basis for the CSR report since 2014. Materiality analysis according to the GRI template will be implemented initially in the passenger train and real estate operations as part of strategies related to corporate responsibility.

Keyfigures

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