According to the Irish Small and Medium Enterprises Association (Isme) many of its members’ still experience difficulties getting paid by other companies, despite a drop to a record low of 55 days for the average waiting period.

A survey carried out by Isme for the third quarter showed the average 55 day waiting period for payments is the shortest since the introduction of prompt payments legislation in 2002.

About 16 per cent of SMEs faced three months or more delays, down from 21 percent in the previous quarter. Businesses in Dublin had the longest wait on average, with a payment period of 59 days.

The survey also found about 71 percent of respondents favoured the introduction of a statutory 30 day payment regime.