Akzo Nobel N.V. is parent of the group’s fiscal unit in the Netherlands, and is therefore liable for the liabilities of said fiscal unit as a whole.
Akzo Nobel N.V. has declared in writing that it accepts joint and several liability for contractual debts of certain Dutch consolidated companies (section 403 of Book 2 of the Netherlands Civil Code). These debts, at December 31, 2010, aggregating €0.4 billion (2009: €0.5 billion), are included in the consolidated balance sheet. Additionally, at December 31, 2010, guarantees were issued on behalf of consolidated companies for an amount of €2.4 billion (2009: €2.8 billion), including a guarantee issued by Akzo Nobel N.V. in relation to the exemption of Dulux Paints (Ireland) Ltd, under section 5(c) of the companies (amendment) Act 1986 Ireland.
The debts and liabilities of the consolidated companies underlying these guarantees are included in the consolidated balance sheet or in the amount of long-term liabilities contracted in respect of leasehold, rental, operational leases, research, etc. as disclosed in of the notes to the consolidated financial statements. Guarantees relating to associates and joint ventures amounted to €9 million (2009: €12 million).