§ 25. Mr. Simon Coombs
To ask the President of the Board of Trade what action he proposes to take to discourage the late payment of invoices to small and medium-sized companies. 
§ Mr. Page
In the 1994 White Paper, "Competitiveness—Helping Business to Win", the Government announced a number of practical measures to tackle the late payment of commercial debt. These measures included additional prompt payment requirements for Government Departments and their agencies, the development of proposals for a British standard for prompt payment, the implementation of proposals to require public companies to state their payment policies in their directors' reports, further changes to streamline and simplify court procedures and a review of the scope of the small claims procedure.
Work on the implementation of these measures is continuing.