The government is planning new legislation to prevent those who pay suppliers late from winning government contracts. The new prompt payment initiative looks set to be introduced in Autumn 2019 and it will mean that those organisations wanting to win government contracts will need to pay their suppliers promptly.

Why prompt payment matters

Cabinet Office Minister, Oliver Dowden commented “Paying invoices on time is vital for smaller businesses who are the backbone of the UK economy”.

James Roberts, Political Director of the TaxPayers’ Alliance, said:

“Getting involved in public procurement is a tough gig for small firms. In the past, bigger contractors have dragged their feet when paying smaller suppliers, causing them cash flow problems and leaving SMEs hesitant to take the work.”

“These proposals finally do something about that. Making the process more small business friendly delivers the double whammy of driving down costs and supporting enterprise. Taxpayers should welcome these changes, which will ultimately mean more competition, lower costs and better services.”

The Public Procurement Review Service

The public Procurement review service, formerly known as the Mystery Shopper, is a free anonymous complaints service for any supplier who is experiencing issues and concerns around procurements they are involved in or about the conduct of contracting authorities. The service has helped speed up payments totalling £5.2 million since 2011. You can find out more about the scope and remit of the service here.

You can use this service by sending an email to publiceprocurementreview@cabinetoffice.gov.uk Or you can call the team on 0345 010 3503

A new small business champion to help SMEs

In addition to this, the Prime Minister has announced the forthcoming appointment of a small business champion Minister to oversee the championing of small businesses and to help the Government meet the aspirational target of spending one pound in three with SMEs by 2022.

We feel the changes being made will put SMEs in a stronger place and give them the ability to scale and grow as they will have the cash flow available to enable entrepreneurship.

David Asker

David is an authorised High Court Enforcement Officer and our Director of Corporate Governance

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