Late Payments are an Increasing Concern for Asian Business

By Atradius N.v., PRNE
Saturday, June 4, 2011

SINGAPORE, June 6, 2011 -

The majority of Asian businesses are now more concerned about late
payments and defaults than they were before the recession, according to a new
independent study released today which was sponsored by leading global credit
insurer, Atradius and conducted by CFO Innovation Asia.

This key result is among a number of valuable findings from the new
Pan-Asian study, which was undertaken with companies of all sizes in more
than 10 countries, including China, Hong Kong and Singapore, to identify
current attitudes and experiences of payments and payment risks following the
global financial crisis.

The research also found that there was some cause for the heightened
concern as 75% of respondents indicated payments were being made outside of
their agreed payment terms and almost half (49%) reported that requests from
customers for extended payment terms had increased.

Martin Jones, Atradius' Singapore Country Manager, explained: "While the
research identifies a number of key factors of concern to Asian businesses,
perhaps the most revealing finding is the methods companies are using to deal
with the situation. Protecting themselves by reducing exposure to less
creditworthy companies was the preferred approach for 80% of respondents,
while 40% said that they will focus on up-front payments as a measure to
improve payment and cash flow."

He added: "The issue arising from both of these approaches is that while
they limit exposure to risk, they can also inhibit growth and opportunities
for Asian business in that over-restrictive trading terms drive potential
customers to seek suppliers elsewhere with less cautious and more attractive
credit terms. More favourable credit terms can often be offered by businesses
protected by trade credit insurance. As credit insurance covers businesses to
an agreed level of credit, it enables companies to take advantage of
opportunities without needing to introduce potentially inhibitive measures
such as up front payment, since a policy pays out up to 90% of the value of
the amount outstanding if the policyholder's buyer doesn't pay."

A full version of the new study, entitled "Receivables after the crisis"
is available for download from

About Atradius

The Atradius Group provides trade credit insurance, surety and
collections services worldwide, and has a presence through 160 offices in 42
countries. Atradius has access to credit information on 60 million companies
worldwide and makes more than 20,000 trade credit limit decisions daily. Its
products help protect companies throughout the world from payment risks
associated with selling products and services on credit.

For further information: Atradius Corporate Communications, Christine Gerryn, Tel.: +31-20-553-2047, E-mail: christine.gerryn at ; Atradius Country Manager - Singapore
Martin Jones, Tel.: +65-6372-5372, E-mail: martin.jones at

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