Defining simple and transparent boundaries for sustainability reporting is complex. These challenges are amplified due to our size, the range of our activities and the complexity of arrangements, such as joint ventures, that we use to share the risk in large projects.

We report on our economic impact by stating Statoil's share of assets, liabilities, income and expenses.

Several sections of the sustainability report describe our impact on local communities - including the payment of taxes, the range of our procurements and our expenditures on research and various social investments. This information is collected and consolidated in line with the remaining annual report.

We report health, safety and environment (HSE) information from operations within our "control" boundaries.

By "control", we mean that we either own the assets and engage or employ the workforce, or that we operate the asset under a contractual obligation to the owners.

Where we operate joint ventures (JVs) and our joint venture agreements permit, we seek to implement our own standards and policies. For these operated JVs, HSE performance data is collected and consolidated within our control boundary. Whenever we participate in a JV that we do not operate, we encourage the operator of the JV to adopt measures and standards that will ensure compliance with statutory and regulatory requirements applicable to the joint venture, manage risks and contribute to continuous improvement in HSE performance.

While all HSE performance indicators are assembled from assets under operational control, two indicators related to greenhouse gas emissions (CO2 and methane) are also reported in proportion to our equity share.

In assets where we have influence, we may choose to report information externally if it is of specific interest and applicable agreements allow. Hence, while Statoil did not operate any shale gas assets in 2011, we have chosen to include information on how the company is preparing for shale gas and tight oil operatorship in North America .

We report about people in our direct employment.

The information about people-related policies applies to Statoil and its subsidiaries. An exception to this is the treatment of Statoil Fuel & Retail, which operates and reports as a separate entity.

Some exceptions apply in relation to contracted personnel. For further information about how we work with suppliers, see the related article.

With regard to ethics and human rights, our policies and requirements apply to all operations we control and to all staff and contractors involved in those operations.

This report covers work relating to ethics, anti-corruption and human rights. Like the laws governing these areas, Statoil's policies cover behaviour in various dimensions. We believe that ethical conduct is a necessary condition for sustainable business. Consequently, we demand high ethical standards of our people as well as everyone who acts on our behalf. We expect our partners and suppliers to have standards consistent with our own. We take a risk-based approach to our work that aims to prevent any integrity breaches in connection with our activities, and our relevant policies are designed accordingly.

On Statoil Fuel & Retail

Statoil owns a controlling stake (53%) in Statoil Fuel & Retail ASA (SFR). SFR is a separate incorporated company, listed on the Oslo Stock Exchange, with a board and governance processes in its own right. For more information, see www.statoilfuelretail.com.

We have chosen to include performance indicators for Statoil Fuel & Retail along with corresponding information about our remaining operations. However, since the company is independently operated, readers should not assume that information about management policies will apply to Statoil Fuel & Retail unless this is specifically stated. As a rule, information about issues and dilemmas facing Statoil Fuel & Retail is explained in separate articles.