Ernst & Young's statement

Independent Assurance Statement to British American Tobacco Management

We have performed a limited assurance engagement on selected sustainability data presented in the British American Tobacco p.l.c. (“BAT”) 2017 Sustainability Report (“the Report”)1.

Respective responsibilities

BAT management is responsible for the collection and presentation of the information within the Report. BAT management are also responsible for the design, implementation and maintenance of internal controls relevant to the preparation of the Report, so that it is free from material misstatement, whether due to fraud or error.

Our responsibility, in accordance with our engagement terms with BAT management, is to carry out a ‘limited level’ assurance engagement on selected data in the Report (“the subject matter information”). We do not accept or assume any responsibility for any other purpose or to any other person or organisation. Any reliance any such third party may place on the Report is entirely at its own risk.

Our assurance engagement has been planned and performed in accordance with the International Standard for Assurance Engagements (ISAE 3000 Revised), Assurance Engagements Other Than Audits or Reviews of Historical Financial Information. The criteria we have used to evaluate the Report (“the Criteria”) include BAT’s own criteria as set out in the Report, and supplementary internal guidance documents.

Summary of work performed

The procedures we performed were based on our professional judgement and included the steps outlined below:

  1. Conducted interviews with management to understand sustainability priorities and performance during the reporting period.
  2. Reviewed selected documents relating to sustainability management, to understand progress made across the organisation.
  3. Assessed performance data through the following work-steps:
  4. Reviewed the presentation of the EHS data in the Report, including descriptions of performance, limitations and assumptions.

Our review of the sustainability data was limited to the following metrics for the 2017 reporting period. Our review did not include data relating to Reynolds American Inc, the US business which BAT acquired in July 2017:

Metric Units
Environment Tonnes scope 1, 2 & 3 greenhouse gas emissions in carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e)
Tonnes CO2e per million cigarette equivalent (MCE)
Gigajoules (GJ) energy consumption per MCE
GJ renewable energy consumption per MCE
% of total energy use from renewable sources
Cubic metres water withdrawn per MCE
Cubic metres water recycled per MCE
% of total water recycled
Tonnes of waste generated
Tonnes of waste to landfill per MCE
Tonnes of waste recycled per MCE
% of manufacturing sites reporting zero waste to landfill
% of waste recycled
Sustainable agriculture % of farmers’ wood fuel from sustainable sources
Health and safety Number of fatalities to employees
Number of fatalities to contractors
Number of fatalities to members of the public involving BAT vehicles
Number of serious injuries to employees
Number of serious injuries to contractors
Number of Lost Workday Cases (LWCs) to employees resulting in at least one shift off work
LWC Incident Rate (number of incidents per 200,000 hours worked)
Group diversity % of women in senior management
% of women represented in BAT’s workforce at different levels of the organisation
Responsible marketing % of markets undertaking Youth Smoking Prevention (YSP) activities based on BAT’s global guidelines
Corporate Social Investment (CSI) Investment (£) in CSI projects

Limitations of our review

We conducted our work to express a limited assurance conclusion. The procedures performed in a limited assurance engagement vary in nature and timing from, and are less in extent than for a reasonable assurance engagement. Consequently, the level of assurance obtained in a limited assurance engagement is substantially lower than the assurance that would have been obtained had we performed a reasonable assurance engagement and we do not therefore express a reasonable assurance opinion.

The scope of our engagement was limited to the reporting period, and therefore 2017 performance only. We only reviewed data and descriptions of performance in relation to the metrics identified in the summary of work performed above. Data from Reynolds American Inc. has been excluded from the scope of our review.

Our work was limited to headquarters activities. We did not visit any local companies.

We have only reviewed narrative content within the Report that relates to sustainability metrics identified in the table above. We have not provided assurance over claims made by BAT that are statements of belief or forward looking in nature.

The responsibility for the prevention and detection of fraud, error and non-compliance with laws or regulations rests with BAT management. Our work should not be relied upon to disclose all such material misstatements, frauds, errors or instances of non-compliance that may exist.

Our conclusions

Based on the scope of our review out conclusions are outline below:

Completeness and accuracy of performance information

How complete and accurate is the select sustainability data presented in the Report?

  • With the exception of the limitations identified in the Report, we are not aware of any material reporting units (as defined by BAT) that have been excluded from the Group-level data relating to the metrics identified above.
  • Nothing has come to our attention that causes us to believe that the data relating to the metrics identified above has not been collated properly at Group-level.
  • We are not aware of any errors that would materially affect the data for the metrics identified above as presented in the Report.

Our independence and competence

With the exception of this work, we have provided no other services relating to BAT’s approach to sustainability reporting throughout 2017.

We have implemented measures to ensure that we are in compliance with the applicable independence and professional competence rules as articulated by the IFAC Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants and ISQC2. Our assurance team has been drawn from our UK Climate Change and Sustainability Services team, which undertakes engagements similar to this with a number of significant UK and international businesses.

Ernst & Young LLP
March 2018

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  1. The 2017 Sustainability Report includes the print Sustainability Report , as well as selected data contained within this online performance centre, indicated by the Ernst & Young stamp at the bottom of the page.
  2. Parts A and B of the IESBA Code; and the International Standard on Quality Control 1 (ISQC1).
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