MBIE breaches own rules with late payments

Under-fire MBIE is seriously struggling with payment issues with figures showing it pays a quarter of bills late – a breach of its own rules, says Labour’s Small Business spokesperson Jacinda Ardern.


“The Ministry is in serious trouble over not paying its own staff properly. That’s embarrassing enough for a Ministry that includes the former Labour department.


“But its annual review shows it pays a quarter of its invoices late – that’s over 11,000 bills not being paid on time. This is a breach of the payment rules it publishes. The Government rules for sourcing, published by MBIE in 2014 says:


Rule 48 Prompt payment: Each agency should ensure prompt payment of suppliers’ invoices. At a minimum, invoices must be paid at the time/s set out in the contract, or earlier if possible.


“The Ministry for Business is responsible for small business and should be leading by example.


“MBIE is clearly struggling with its payment systems. Steven Joyce’s merger has resulted in staff being underpaid by millions of dollars and likely more millions of dollars of late payments for contractors.


“Mr Joyce should apologise for the payment failures and get it sorted ASAP.


“You would expect MBIE to understand the pressures small businesses are under and that cashflow is king for them.


“MBIE needs to sharpen up its act,” says Jacinda Ardern.