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Transparency in payment times to small businesses

13 May 2020

Legislation introduced into the Parliament today will deliver on the Morrison Government’s commitment to assist Australian small businesses to get paid on time.

The Payment Times Reporting Bill 2020 will legislate transparency for large business payment times by requiring large businesses to report payment performance providing small businesses with information to enable them to identify and supply large businesses that pay on time.

Businesses with a total annual income of over $100 million will be required to report on how and when they pay their small business suppliers.

Minister for Employment, Skills, Small and Family Business, Senator the Hon Michaelia Cash said that now, more than ever, it was important for large businesses to step up and do the right thing by their small business suppliers.

“With the impact of COVID-19 it is even more important that large businesses, as stewards of their supply chains, pay their small business suppliers the money they are owed promptly,” Minister Cash said.

“We are facing unprecedented challenges as we respond to the global COVID-19 pandemic, and timely payments are critical to keeping small businesses open."

The Payment Times Reporting Bill 2020 introduces a range of elements to strike the right balance of providing transparency for small businesses without creating a counterproductive regulatory burden for large businesses.

“Through this Bill, the Morrison Government is backing Australia’s 3.5 million small businesses – they are the lifeblood of our communities and the backbone of the Australian economy.”

Large businesses will also be asked to detail their use of supply chain financing practices. This will highlight when it is used by large businesses to extend payment times.

The legislation will cover around 3,000 of Australia’s large businesses, including foreign companies that carry on an enterprise in Australia as well as certain government enterprises.

This legislation has been developed following extensive consultation in 2019 and 2020 with small and large businesses, business representatives and government.

Media contact:

Minister Cash's office 02 6277 7610