15th January 2013
Irish Presidency to host Informal Competitiveness Council ‘SMEs as a driver of European Growth’ in Dublin in May
Prompt Payments legislation will establish clear expectation in law that payment will be made according to agreed terms, creditors will not be penalised financially when paid late and debtors will not benefit
Action Plan for Jobs focuses on removing obstacles to competitiveness, including issue of late payments and supporting new and existing businesses to develop and expand
15th January, 2013
“The economic crisis has presented numerous difficulties, but for SMEs in particular, the challenges presented by late payments have grown disproportionately, as credit lines and bank loans become less available”, said Minister for Small Business John Perry T.D., during his address to the European Commission Seminar on the Late Payments Directive.
“In my role as Minister for Small Business and as SME Envoy for Ireland, I see at first hand the harm being done to Irish businesses, particularly SMEs, as a result of their invoices not being paid on time.
“Implementing the Late Payment Directive is critically important for all Irish businesses, as late payments in commercial transactions have an adverse effect on businesses by straining cash flow, adding financial costs and fuelling uncertainty for many businesses.
“This Government is absolutely focused on ensuring that Irish companies are supported in every way to sustain and develop their business, increase exports, create jobs and rebuild the economy. One of these measures is the implementation of the Late Payment Directive.
“The Directive which comes into effect in Ireland on the 16th March, will act as a deterrent to late payment and a driver for payment on time, by establishing a clear expectation in law that payment will be made according to agreed terms, that creditors will not be penalised financially when paid late and debtors will not benefit.
“It is vital that we build on the ability of Irish companies to succeed and grow, to underpin our future potential for jobs, growth and prosperity and our potential to innovate and develop new markets.
“One of my first initiatives as Minister for Small Business was to look at the need to have continuing dialogue structures in place, whereby the concerns of small businesses could be brought to the attention of the newly-appointed Government. This led to establishment of the Advisory Group for Small Business, which I chair.
“The Advisory Group continues to facilitate structured and regular dialogue between myself, as Minister for Small Business and representatives of the small business sector, on issues of concern to Small Businesses. The Action Plan for Jobs, which sets out Key Government Actions impacting on SMEs, has taken on a number of the recommendations from the Advisory Group’s Report including the issue of late payments.
“We will have to deliver these supports, while also running an effective and efficient Presidency of the EU. As part of the Irish Presidency, an Informal Competitiveness Council (Industry) will be held in Dublin on Friday 3rd May, which will focus on ‘SMEs as a driver of European Growth’ and will address real issues for SMEs as we attempt to negotiate our way, out of the current economic crisis.
“This clearly shows the importance, Ireland attaches to creating the right conditions and environment in Europe, in order to promote growth and jobs, to help our Irish businesses to grow and internationalise.”