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FSB pressures Government to end late payments to small firms

Small businesses have sent a clear message to politicians and big businesses that ‘Everyone deserves to be paid on time’, with the launch of the new campaign ‘Fair Pay Fair Play’. 

The campaign aims to pressure Government to introduce new reforms to tackle poor payment practices in the UK. And FSB is encouraging all of its members to get involved by posting videos, photos or a message on any social media platform, including Twitter and Instagram, saying why they are backing our campaign. Find out more here.

FSB research shows that the vast majority (84%) of small firms report being paid late, with a third (33%) saying at least one in four payments they’re owed arrives later than agreed. Nine out of ten public sector suppliers say that they have been paid late.

The campaign will last for a month leading up to the Spring Statement in March and comes following the Chancellor’s promise to tackle the issue in last year’s Statement. FSB is calling on the Government to enlist the help of Non-Executive Directors, strengthen payment enforcement and adopt Project Bank Accounts in public procurement.

Speaking at the launch of the campaign, FSB National Chairman Mike Cherry said: “Poor payments is a problem that so many of our small businesses can relate to. As a country, we are behind almost every other industrialised nation in our ability to pay small businesses on time.

This problem isn’t a new one and despite some positive action from Government, far too many of our small firms are still subjected to late payments and bullying from some big businesses who take advantage of their dominant position.”

“As this year’s Spring Statement approaches, small businesses want the Chancellor to follow up these words with the tangible actions. Our reforms are not the silver bullet that will suddenly signal the end of poor payment practices but are certainly important and necessary steps towards this. I am calling on all politicians and big businesses to back these reforms and show that they believe in fair pay and fair play.”