About the scope of this report

NS is a company that is based in the Netherlands and has a single, Dutch shareholder, the Dutch State. In this annual report, published on 28 February 2019, we are therefore primarily giving an account for our Dutch stakeholders. NS focuses on passengers and ensuring that their door-to-door journeys are comfortable. NS concentrates primarily on improving operational performance on the railways, supported by activities that include bicycle facilities, stations and improving the door-to-door journey together with other public transport partners. In addition, we aim to remain a financially healthy organisation. Our stakeholders expect that from us as well. They also want to see accountability for our non-financial results. To many stakeholders, customer satisfaction, safety and punctuality are more important than the financial position. This is also seen in the regular dialogues with our stakeholders.

NS is able to have its greatest social impact in the Netherlands. In order to offer passengers the best possible service at the right price, we are also accumulating experience abroad. That keeps us on our toes. Our goals in Germany and the United Kingdom are to acquire knowledge and experience, and to do so profitably. Like other major European state railway companies, we are preparing for possible further deregulation of the market. Activities abroad have to be of benefit to the interests in the Netherlands. Our Dutch stakeholders say that they believe our activities elsewhere in Europe are a materially relevant theme. That is why we have included Abellio’s results outside the Netherlands as a separate chapter; this is also because of the material relevance of our activities in the United Kingdom and Germany for NS as a whole. The franchises in other countries are subject to franchise arrangements that have been contractually agreed with the franchise authority. That is why they focus more on operational affairs.

In addition to the financial statements and the combined auditor’s report, the NS Annual Report for 2018 contains other information, comprising:

  • the Profile of NS, Foreword by the CEO, Our Strategy, all sections in Activities in the Netherlands and Operations Abroad, Looking Ahead, Corporate Governance, Organisation of risk management, Finances in Brief, Our Impact on the Environment and on Society, NS as an Employer in the Netherlands, Dialogue with our Stakeholders, Scope and Reporting criteria

  • The report by the Supervisory Board, included in the NS Group section, and

  • other data, in accordance with Part 9 of Book 2 of the Dutch Civil Code.

This annual report is subdivided into three blocks:

  1. A core report containing the profile, the foreword by the CEO, our strategy, operational results and looking ahead. For the operational results, the heart of the report consists of the results that we have achieved within the franchise agreements with the Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management for the Dutch main rail network.

  2. A section containing other information such as corporate governance, stakeholder dialogues and the social impact analysis.

  3. Financial statements.