Depreciation, amortisation and impairment losses

These amount to €269.8m, compared with €223.3m the previous year. The increase reflects a significant rise in capital expenditure over the last two years in connection with major contract renewals and awards, as well as the change in the scope of consolidation. In particular, this item includes amortisation of €20.6m as a result of the allocation of part of the price paid for acquisitions during the year. Impairment losses on intangible assets and on property, plant and equipment amounted to €9.5m, compared with €10.8m in 2007.