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Payment Of Bills

Volume 229: debated on Tuesday 27 July 1993

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To ask the President of the Board of Trade what proportion of bills are paid on time by Government Departments.

During the financial year 1992–93, major purchasing Departments and agencies undertook sample surveys to determine the percentage of invoices paid within the agreed credit period, or within 30 days where no credit period has been set. Government Departments reported results in the range 75 to 100 per cent.The full results are:

DepartmentPercent of invoices paid within contract terms or 30 days
Agriculture, Fisheries and Food85
Central Statistical Office86
Customs and Excise85
Education and Science84·4
Employment and ACAS84
Employment Service84·4
Foreign and Commonwealth91·37
Health and Safety Executive94
Inland Revenue86·2
Lord Chancellors83·4
National Savings95·3
Paymaster General's Office100
PSA—Building Management73
Royal Mint78
Social Security94
Trade and Industry90·5
Welsh Office76
Departments will continue to monitor their payment performance and for subsequent years the returns will be published in departmental annual reports.