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Finally, when we record the retirement of a ship component that is included within the ship’s cost basis, we mayhave to estimate the net book value of the asset being retired in order to remove it from the ship’s cost basis.We determine the average useful life of our ships and their residual values based primarily on our estimates ofthe weighted-average useful lives and residual values of the ships’ major component systems, such as cabins,superstructure, main electric, engines and hull. In addition, we consider, among other things, long-term vacationmarket conditions, competition and historical useful lives of similarly-built ships. We have estimated our newships’ weighted-average useful lives at 30 years and their average residual values at 15% of our original shipcost. Further, we determine the useful life of ship improvements based on estimates of the period over which theassets will be of economic benefit to us. In determining such lives, we also consider factors, including but notlimited to, physical deterioration, obsolescence, regulatory constraints and maintenance requirements.Given the large size and complexity of our ships, ship accounting estimates require considerable judgment andare inherently uncertain. We do not have cost segregation studies performed to specifically componentize ourships. In addition, since we do not separately componentize our ships, we do not identify and track depreciationof specific original ship components. Therefore, we typically have to estimate the net book value of componentsthat are retired, based primarily upon their replacement cost, their age and their original estimated useful lives.If materially different conditions existed, or if we materially changed our assumptions of ship lives and residualvalues, our depreciation expense, loss on retirement of ship components and net book value of our ships wouldbe materially different. In addition, if we change our assumptions in making our determinations as to whether39
improvements to a ship add value, the amounts we expense each year as repair and maintenance expense couldincrease, which would be partially offset by a decrease in depreciation expense, resulting from a reduction incapitalized costs. Our 2013 ship depreciation expense would increase by approximately $40 million for everyyear we reduce our estimated average 30 year ship useful life. In addition, if our ships were estimated to have noresidual value, our 2013 depreciation expense would increase by approximately $190 million.We believe that the estimates we made for ship accounting purposes are reasonable and our methods areconsistently applied in all material respects and, accordingly, result in depreciation expense that is based on arational and systematic method to equitably allocate the costs of our ships to the periods during which they areused. In addition, we believe that the estimates we made are reasonable and our methods consistently applied in