Companies in Serbia have to wait 139 days, on average, for their invoices to be paid, despite the legal deadlines being much shorter than that – says the Business Support Network.
A survey conducted by this organization has shown that a total of 7.6% of issued invoices is never paid because some companies, which order a product or a service, often have their bank accounts frozen, or declare bankruptcy before settling their debts.
Companies in energy sector have to wait the longest to have their invoices paid (219 days on average), followed by construction companies (203 days), food producers (164 days), and textile companies (163 days). Banks have their invoices paid the fastest (13 days), as well as tourist facilities (53 days).
The legal deadline for paying an invoice issued by a privately-owned company is 60 days, and 45 days for companies in public sector.
88 small business owners, 234 small companies, 57 medium-size companies, and 45 large companies participated in the survey.
The survey has also shown that an average company in Serbia has debts that are twice bigger than their total initial assets, i.e. that the risk of bankruptcy in Serbian companies is still extremely high, with small businesses, micro and small enterprises being at the biggest risk of bankruptcy.
29.7% owes money on the account of unpaid parafiscal fees, 28.4% owe to banks, 21.5% owe to suppliers and business partners, and 11.3% owe the most in unpaid taxes and custom clearance fees.
Compared to 2016, the money owed on the account of unpaid taxes, custom clearance and excise has been reduced from 20.8% to 11.3% in 2017 which means that the state has become more efficient in collecting taxes. However, the amount of unpaid parafiscal fees has increased by 7.5% compared to last year, as did the money owed to suppliers (by 4.9%).
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