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Departmental Procurement

Volume 487: debated on Thursday 29 January 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what proportion of invoices for goods and services procured from small and medium-sized businesses were paid within 10 days of receipt by (a) her Department and (b) the agencies for which her Department is responsible in (i) 2006-07 and (ii) 2007-08; and if she will make a statement. (243354)

The Home Department including United Kingdom Border Agency terms of payment was 26 days in 2006-07 and 2007-08 except in special circumstances, where an immediate payment was required. To provide this information would incur disproportionate cost.

However, following the Prime Minister's commitment of 8 October that central Government Departments will make payment within 10 days we will additionally report 10 day payment performance and are able to report on this.

Both the Identity and Passport Service and Criminal Records Bureau agencies do not hold the required information for 2006-07 and 2007-08 financial years and to obtain it would incur disproportionate cost.

Following the announcement on 8 October both of these agencies are working towards paying SMEs within 10 days of receipt of invoices.