The Tees Valley Mayor has issued a call for public bodies in the region to review their payment processes to make sure companies are being paid promptly during the coronavirus outbreak.
The call came as Tees Valley Combined Authority and South Tees Development Corporation changed their operations to shorten their payment terms, and began working with their partner agency to ensure companies in the private sector supplying both organisations are paid as soon as possible. Previously, the process would take up to 30 days.
Many businesses across the region and the whole of the UK are being impacted by financial problems and uncertainty due to the coronavirus outbreak and Government support measures, including loans and grants, can be found at gov.uk/coronavirus.
Now both public bodies and other companies in Tees Valley have been urged to follow suit and go one step further to make sure cash is flowing through businesses effectively to help ease the situation.
Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen said: “The coronavirus situation is hitting businesses of all kinds and sizes hard, right across the globe. This isn’t a problem limited to Teesside, Darlington and Hartlepool, but we all need to think about what we can do to protect our regional economy in these challenging times.
“Make no mistake, our small and medium-sized companies are feeling the strain first, and there is only so much advice and support we, or the Government, can give.
“In the spirit of pulling together, I’d ask the public sector to lead from the front in ensuring immediate payment for our valuable firms. I’d also ask our companies, some of whom will also be feeling the pinch, to see if they can streamline what they do to support their supply chains and fellow businesses.”
Any companies that have followed the Tees Valley Combined Authority or South Tees Development Corporation invoicing process but are still waiting for payment are advised to email [email protected] in the first instance. If they need further assistance, they should email [email protected], which is being monitored throughout the day.