Only a third of public sector contracting bodies in Scotland are meeting new public sector procurement rules to ensure prompt payment through the entire supply chain.

The new research has prompted the Specialist Engineering Contractors’ Group for Scotland to call on the Government to set up a new construction regulator role to ensure tier two and three subcontractors are being paid on time.

In April 2016, contracting authorities in Scotland with large annual procurement budgets became statutorily bound to declare in their procurement strategies how they intended to ensure 30-day payments along their supply chains.

Research conducted by SEC Group Scotland using the Freedom of Information Act revealed that 18 months into Scotland’s new payment regime,  just nine client bodies from a sample of 29 had sought to ensure 30-day payments throughout the supply chain.

Contracting authorities deemed to be compliant

• NHS Fife • Western Isles NHS Board6 • Edinburgh Napier University • University of Strathclyde • University of Edinburgh • NHS Borders • Scottish Fire and Rescue Service • Disclosure Scotland • University of Glasgow

It claims 45% or 13 public sector clients have failed to comply with Scottish Government rules on protecting payment periods, with the balance either introducing measures or operating under terms that did not look sufficient to support good payment practice for sub-sub contractors.

Specialist contractors north of the border plan to present the damning report to the Scottish Government, which is required under the new Procurement Reform (Scotland) Act to report annually on procurement activity.

Source: Construction Enquirer

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