Page deepens doubt over bill on prompt-payment
Tuesday 06 February 1996
Richard Page, the Department of Trade and Industry's small firms minister, yesterday used Michael Heseltine's admission that as a businessman he had deliberately delayed paying bills to back the Government's scepticism about prompt-payment legislation.
Mr Page, a businessman himself, said: "What the Deputy Prime Minister has been saying is a snapshot of the real world where companies operating on the knife-edge of survival do things to ensure their continued existence."
Calling Mr Heseltine's controversial admission "frank and candid" Mr Page said it showed that the Government was living in the "real world of day-to-day business rather than in some theoretical concept. It is this hands-on experience that is being turned to good effect to help small businessmen and women."
Mr Page said responses to a consultation exercise in 1993 on whether to legislate against late payment showed views deeply divided and no clear consensus for the legal right to interest that some small firms lobbies have demanded.
There was concern that legislation to force prompt payment would be used mainly against small businesses, and that larger firms would simply extend their credit terms, Mr Page said.
The Government has announced a series of voluntary measures to improve payment, in co-operation with industry, but has repeatedly made clear that it will legislate if these fail. Last month Mr Page started a review of the first two years of the voluntary measures, and he has asked for comments by the end of this month.
Tony Bonner, who today takes over as chairman of the CBI's small and medium firms council, said the employers continued to be against a statutory right to interest on late payments, because it formalised the financial arrears as a loan, increased the costs of the business and from the administrative point of view could be a nightmare.
He said he had seen businesses delay payment to creditors, which was "bad news because it creates bad will among suppliers and does not help companies grow."
Harry Potter actor suffered 'severe flu-like symptoms' on a flight from London to Orlando
First full-length look is finally here
World cities ranked in terms of safety, food security and 'liveability'
"Oink! Oink! Hee hee hee!" First interview with the big-screen star
Biohacking group hopes technology will lead people to think about even more dystopian uses
- 2 The awkward moment Sarah Palin raised $25,000 for Hillary Clinton's election campaign
- 3 Ball pool for adults opens in London
- 4 Amal Clooney gives excellent response to fashion question at European Court of Human Rights
- 5 Baldness could soon be treated using stem cells, scientists hope
Woman falls to her death as she celebrates marriage proposal at the edge of Ibiza cliff
Sex abuse inquiry: 'Victims receive death threats' after MPs release names online
Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
Teenager brandishing fake gun taken down by police after demanding airtime on Netherlands' NOS TV station
The awkward moment Sarah Palin raised $25,000 for Hillary Clinton's election campaign
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
Have we reached 'peak food'? Shortages loom as global production rates slow
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Liberal Democrat minister defends comments suggesting immigration causes pub closures
iJobs Money & Business
£30000 - £35000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager - Marke...
£13000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This Pension Specialist was established ...
£23000 - £26000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Market Research Executive...
£25000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Technical Report Writer is re...