The Labour Party’s shadow small business minister, Bill Esterson, has slammed the government’s record on supply chain practices and claimed the opposition is the only party able to fight the corner of Britain’s small business owners.
Writing for the Labour List website, Sefton Central MP Bill Esterson used fresh demands from the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) to end poor treatment of small suppliers to speak out against the Conservative government’s record on issues such as late payments and public sector procurement practices.
it’s been clear for the last eight years that the Tories are on the side of the biggest corporations, not the small businesses that are the lifeblood of the British economy, Esterson wrote.
This week, FSB chairman Mike Cherry wrote to all FTSE 100 companies urging CEOs to end the late payment practices that he claimed forced 50, 000 small businesses to fold each year.
many large firms appear to be using the disparity of power in business relationships to squeeze their suppliers, delaying payments to improve their own cash flow, Cherry wrote in the letter.
Cherry used the collapse of Carillion to highlight the disparity of power? between large firms and small suppliers, which have been known to delay payment as a cash flow boost. Cherry added that he wrote to Carillion in the summer of 2017 after learning the company was extending payment terms to 120 days.
The frailty? of the government’s prompt payment code, which commits businesses to paying suplliers within 60 days, was also noted by Cherry, who pressed for a 30 day limit.
Responding to Cherry’s letter, Esterson said the Labour Party would take a more robust approach to supply chain practices.
if people cannot get away with paying their mortgage or their rent 120 days late, then large companies that support jobs up the supply chain shouldnt either, he argued.
carillion’s collapse exposed a corporate culture of greed and complacency: nothing but profit-chasing while suppliers and smallbusinesses suffered uncertainty and insecurity. It is ridiculous that the government has failed to promote a regularly culture that is robust, instead forcing companies to go bust at the whims of large corporations.