BHP Billiton has sought to remind smaller suppliers that they may be exempt from the company’s revision of its invoice payment terms from more than a year ago.
In November 2015 BHP increased its standard terms from 30 days to 60 days to bring them into line with “current industry and market practice”.
But the mining giant also took the step of exempting all small businesses from the change.
“At BHP Billiton we place enormous value on our suppliers across Western Australia – they are a critical part of our efforts to safely improve our performance,” the company said in a letter to CCI Chief Executive Deidre Willmott.
“In light of the current challenges facing the State economy, we are seeking to remind small and local businesses of their eligibility for exemption from our standard payment terms.”
The letter was signed by BHP’s WA Iron Ore President Edgar Basto, Nickel West President Eddy Haegel and General Manager Australia Petroleum production Graham Salmond.
For the purposes of the exemption, a small business is one that has fewer than 20 employees and a turnover of less than US$5 million, BHP said.
The company had also exempted local suppliers whose primary business location was in a community close to one of its operations, and those that are 50 per cent or more Indigenous-owned and demonstrate a commitment to employment and training.
“We also consider granting one-off exemptions to suppliers experiencing significant financial hardship,” BHP said.
Businesses who have questions about supplier terms, or have a particular case to discuss, should contact Shane Elliss, Head of Business Partnership, Supply Minerals Australia by email to: firstname.lastname@example.org