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China firms endure longer wait for payments

This is leading to record amounts of receivables on corporate balance sheets

[BEIJING] As China's economy continues to cool, companies are waiting longer and finding it harder to get paid for goods and services they've already sold, leading to record amounts of receivables - and potential write-offs - on corporate balance sheets.

At Longyuan Construction Group Co, an east China builder of high-rise offices, apartments and highways, receivables last year inched up 4.9 per cent to 4.1 billion yuan (S$824 million), while on average collection times extended to 95.2 days, compared with 76.3 days for 2011.

Slow collection of money owed is causing Longyuan to delay its own payments to steel and cement suppliers, Zhang Li, the company's board secretary, told Reuters, in a ripple...

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