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On-time payments in only two Member States – EUROCHAMBRES launches 30max campaign
Estonia and Finland.  These are the only two European countries where public administrations settle their bills with the private sector within the 30-day limit foreseen by the revised Late Payment Directive which should enter into force in the whole EU on 16 March.  In all other countries, public-to-private payments exceed 30 days, with Italy, Greece and Spain being the worst performers (180, 174 and 160 average payment days respectively).

Every late payment has direct consequences for businesses, especially small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs): investment cuts, job losses and even business closures.

“The solvency of thousands of reputable businesses is at stake and with it the fate of many thousands more jobs,” said Arnaldo Abruzzini, Secretary General of EUROCHAMBRES.

EUROCHAMBRES fully supports the ‘zero tolerance’ stance of the European Commission towards member states who fail to transpose the revised terms of the directive, and has thus today launched the 30max campaign, urging public authorities to pay their invoices on time.

“The prompt payment of invoices is a direct, efficient and swift way in which policy makers can improve cash flow in the real economy and contribute to the growth and jobs agenda.  We expect the European Council meeting tomorrow to curb the late payment culture that prevails in many member states,” said Mr Abruzzini.

About the Late Payment Directive
Public contracts make up over one-sixth of the European economy, yet the public sector is the slowest payer in the EU.  The revised Late Payment Directive gives the right to businesses to be paid by public authorities within 30 days.  Member States had 760 days (until 16 March 2013) to transpose this directive into national law, yet well over half of the member states are set to miss the deadline.

The detailed list of late payers is available on

Further information: Ms Iwona Mertin, Tel. +32 2 282 08 88,

Press contact: Ms Guendalina Cominotti, Tel. +32 2 282 08 66,

All EUROCHAMBRES’ press releases can be downloaded from

EUROCHAMBRES – The Association of European Chambers of Commerce and Industry represents over 20 million enterprises in Europe – 93% of which are SMEs – through members in 44 countries and a European network of 2000 regional and local Chambers.

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This year in Thailand-what next?

AseanAffairs   04 January 2011
By David Swartzentruber      

It is commonplace in journalism to write two types of articles at the transition point between the year that has passed and the New Year. As this writer qualifies as an “old hand” in observing Thailand with a track record dating back 14 years, it is time take a shot at what may unfold in Thailand in 2011.

The first issue that can’t be answered is the health of Thailand’s beloved King Bhumibol, who is now 83 years old. He is the world's longest reigning monarch, but elaborate birthday celebrations in December failed to mask concern over his health. More






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