Companies have been reminded that public bodies will stop accepting business cheques on 19 September, with companies being urged to prepare for the change in advance of the deadline.

The upcoming 'e-Day' is part of an effort by the State to reduce the use of physical payment methods - particularly cheques - and encourage greater use of electronic methods instead.

The Central Bank - which is tasked with implementing the National Payments Plan - has encouraged businesses to ensure they are ready ahead of the deadline in order to "ensure a smooth transition" to electronic payments.

The National Payments Plan projects a €1bn saving for the Irish economy if companies and individuals shift to electronic payments instead of methods like cheques.

A recent survey by the Central Bank projected that 61 million cheques would be issues in Ireland this year, down from 69 million in 2013. However this still makes Ireland one of the biggest users of the payment method in Europe.

The Small Firms Association has also called on businesses to move to electronic payments, and said the move would help companies' cash flow which was "a critical factor in small business success".

National Payments Plan infographic on e-Day