Polish SMEs struggle with payment bottlenecks - debt registry

Adam Łącki, president of the KRD Economic Information Bureau, told PAP that the real percentage of people not paying on time is certainly higher, because people are unwilling to admit to socially unacceptable attitudes. Radek Pietruszka/PAP

Since the outbreak of the coronavirus epidemic in Poland, the number of firms from the small and medium-sized enterprise (SME) sector having problems with timely payment from contractors has increased to 63 percent, according to the National Debt Register (KRD).

IMAS International, which authored the report at the commission of the KRD, said that some of the payment gridlock had no economic basis, only a psychological one. Some 27 percent of respondents admitted that although they have the money, they are not paying as they are saving it for a "rainy day." A further 65 percent of pollees suspect that their contractors are doing the same.

Adam Lacki, president of the KRD Economic Information Bureau, told PAP that the real percentage of people not paying on time is certainly higher, because people are unwilling to admit to socially unacceptable attitudes.

"On the one hand we have many companies that are actually losing liquidity because overnight they have lost earning capacity, and on the other - a large group of enterprises that are withholding payment for fear of the future," he said, adding that the phenomenon is as threatening to the economy as the coronavirus is to humans.

The research was conducted on March 19-23, 2020, on a group of 202 companies from the SME sector.