Wed 11 Mar 2020

Peak Civil Construction body welcomes PM’s challenge on payments

11 March 2020

Australia’s peak industry body for the civil construction industry has welcomed comments made by Prime Minister Scott Morrison encouraging large businesses to pay their suppliers promptly.

The Civil Contractors Federation (CCF) however urges the Prime Minister to extend his call to Government procurement agencies to also pay their head contractors on time, thus providing the cash flow for big business to pay small business in a timely manner.

“The CCF welcomes the clear and unequivocal challenge Prime Minister Scott Morrison has thrown down to the business community to pay their suppliers promptly to help ward off a major economic crisis in Australia, but this needs to extend to Government as well” said Chris Melham, CCF Chief Executive Officer.

“Delayed and disputed payments throughout the supply chain are a significant issue for the construction industry, and in the context of growing economic pressures linked to the Coronavirus, CCF strongly endorses the Prime Minister’s comments” he said.

“Strict adherence to security of payments legislation throughout the supply chain is critical to maintaining the ongoing strength of the civil construction industry in this challenging economic climate.

“The Prime Minister’s speech to the AFR Business Summit sends a clear message to industry and government agencies who procure from civil construction sub-contractors: security of payment is critical to supporting Australia through this economic crisis.

“We simply cannot afford the situation where sub-contractors struggle to pay civil and statutory debts because they are not being paid on time by their customers.

“And whilst we support the Prime Minister’s comments, it is important to also point out that adherence to payment of suppliers’ invoices on time, or ahead of time, is not a practice that should be limited to times of economic crisis. It should be standard business practice, and an approach that should be adopted by all entities who procure civil construction goods and services, regardless of the economic climate” Mr Melham concluded.