The Minister for Small and Family Business, Michaelia Cash has put the nation’s biggest corporations on notice, following the government’s commitment to improve payment times for small businesses.
3000 of the nation’s leading corporations are being called upon to take part in a payment reporting scheme which would require them to publish how long it takes them to clear supplier invoices.
Small business owners are being called upon to have their say on the scheme, which would also require the corporations to commit to 20-day payment terms for suppliers, should they wish to tender on government projects.
The PM Scott Morrison first announced the initiative to small business owners in November at a Business Council of Australia event, saying he had”listened, and heard, loud and clear from small businesses around Australia”.
Speaking with the Sydney Morning Herald, Peter Strong, CEO of the Council of Small Business Owners suggested the scheme provided a new level of accountability.
“How do we make sure someone hasn’t just promised and then crossed their fingers?” he says.
Cutting non-compliant businesses out of government tendering would be one way to force the hand of larger operators, he says.
“In the end, they [late paying businesses] are rorting competition – and people’s mental health is suffering.”