UPDATE 1-UK supermarket Morrisons extends faster payment scheme for small suppliers

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LONDON, June 8 (Reuters) - British supermarket group Morrisons will make immediate payments to its smaller suppliers for a further three months to help them through the coronavirus crisis, it said on Monday.

Morrisons, the UK’s No. 4 supermarket chain after Tesco , Sainsbury’s and Asda implemented the faster payment scheme in March to help small foodmakers and farmers with their cashflow. It ran until the end of May and has now been extended to September.

The scheme applies to firms that have up to 1 million pounds ($1.3 million) of turnover with Morrisons.

The group said it has around 3,000 small suppliers including 1,750 farmers that will benefit.

Last month Morrisons reported a boost to first quarter sales from the coronavirus lockdown, and said costs related to the pandemic should be broadly offset by the government’s business rates relief.

$1 = 0.7885 pounds Reporting by James Davey; editing by Sarah Young, Kirsten Donovan