Senior Advisor for Technical Barriers to Trade Cooperation

Country: Ethiopia
Organization: AGRA
Closing date: 11 May 2020

Senior Advisor for Technical Barriers to Trade Cooperation**

Department of Trade and Industry**

Addis Ababa, African Union Commission1

I. Terms of Reference (Description of the Secondee)

a. General Overview of the Assignment

The Standards Alliance is seeking Technical Barriers to Trade Expert candidate to support the implementation of the TBT related commitments under the AfCFTA as well as other Trading Arrangements, including AGOA, according to the terms of this program. The program will directly support the work of the Department of Trade and Industry of the African Union Commission through the AfCFTA Interim/Permanent Secretariat unit to design and implement the mechanisms required for the implementation of the commitments under Annex 6 (Technical Barriers to Trade) of the African Continental Free Trade Agreement and the strengthening of U.S.-Africa cooperation on TBT.

The candidate will also be responsible for assisting the AfCFTA Secretariat with coordination of the specialized African entities in the area of standards, namely the Pan-African Quality Infrastructure (PAQI) and its bodies the African Accreditation Cooperation (AFRAC), the Intra-Africa Metrology System (AFRIMETS), the African Electro-technical Standardization Commission (AFSEC), and the African Organization for Standardization (ARSO), and with regional and national African standardization agencies as needed for the implementation of a work plan for Annex 6. Where it furthers the objective of effectively implementing the AfCFTA TBT commitments, the candidate will assist in building TBT related capacity of regional economic blocs.

The Technical Barriers to Trade Expert will play a role in managing relationships with international donors that will provide technical assistance for TBT issues. In this capacity, the Expert would be responsible for identifying sources of potential funding for desired activities and for coordinating international activities with partners aiming at increasing effectiveness of those interventions. In this capacity, he / she will also provide management and advisory services on TBT to the Department of Trade and Industry on the AfCFTA processes.

The Expert fulfilling this position would have expertise on technical barriers to trade, and preferably on the implementation of commitments in this discipline under free trade agreements or economic integration mechanisms. In this role, the Expert would garner support in AfCFTA State Parties to develop and implement the work plan of the AfCFTA TBT Annex.

This will be a full-time assignment that will end on September 30, 2021 and will be based at the location where the Interim or Permanent Secretariat for the AfCFTA is located (i.e. Addis Ababa, Ethiopia or Accra, Ghana). The candidate may need to relocate during the duration of the assignment.

b. Key Objectives

The TBT Expert will be responsible for helping to lead the TBT work for the AfCFTA Interim/Permanent

Secretariat and the Department of Trade and Industry. Responsibilities include but are not limited to:

· Development and implementation of a strategic framework for seeking technical assistance and capacity building on standards, technical regulations, conformity assessment, accreditation, and metrology. This framework should include opportunities for collaboration that have been identified at the continental, regional and national levels and key opportunities to expand the collaboration between the United States and the African Union on TBT;

· Development of cooperation mechanisms for delivering technical assistance on standards, technical regulations, conformity assessment, accreditation, and metrology;

· Support for the development of tools that foster mutual recognition of standards, technical regulations, conformity assessment results, accreditation, and metrology;

· Promote the adoption of international standards or the alignment of regional and/or national standards with international standards;

· Aiming at working collaboratively with the AU and the RECs, liaise effectively with other USAID technical assistance programs that focused on AGOA utilization, such as the Trade and Investment Hubs, on issues related to TBT compliance;

· Development of mechanisms to consult with the domestic and international private sector stakeholders in the development and implementation of standards, technical regulations, conformity assessment procedures, accreditation, and metrology at the continental level.

· Support efforts to bring quality infrastructure components, trade policy, legislation, regulations, and production methods into compliance with international obligations, and strengthen TBT regulatory infrastructure in the AU and AfCFTA implementation process;

· Liaise effectively with other related programs within the AU such as the BIAT, AMV, PIDA, AIDA, Commodities Strategy and CAADP so as to ensure infusion of quality infrastructure principles in all developmental programmers of the African Union;

· Work closely with African RECS and Pan African Quality Infrastructure (PAQI) institutions, which are the AU recognized continental quality infrastructure agencies (i.e. AFRAC, AFRIMETS, AFSEC, and ARSO);

· Expand existing partnerships with donors of key markets, such as the U.S. market, to address TBT-related concerns that prevent the growth of trade relationships.

c. Deliverables

In carrying out the tasks, the Secondee will aim to deliver the following over the duration of the program:

· A “mapping” of current technical assistance provided by international donors for TBT related issues to African countries and Regional Economic Communities, identifying the main areas focus, duration of those programs and beneficiary countries (Due: at the end of Q1 of year 1, regularly updated);

· Concept notes for field visits to be submitted to the Head of the AfCFTA Secretariat in line with AfCFTA Secretariat procedures (Due: One week before each mission);

· Report on field visits to be submitted to the Head of the AfCFTA Secretariat in line with AfCFTA Secretariat procedures (Due: One week after the visit);

· Report on consultative meetings and needs assessments with Regional Economic Communities to be submitted to the Head of the AfCFTA Secretariat in line with AfCFTA Secretariat procedures (Due: Two weeks after the visit);

· Summary report of accomplishments to be submitted to the Standards Alliance (Due: at the end of each Quarter);

· Report at the end of the assignment (Due: 30 days after the end of the program);

· Proposal for a strategic framework for the implementation of Annex 6 of the AfCFTA and the operationalization of that framework. The framework should specify engagement plan with donors, with stakeholders, Regional Economic Communities, continental standardization organizations and AfCFTA States Parties (Due: 30 days after the end of Q1 of year 1 of the program). The proposal to be reviewed by the Secretariat and submitted to the AfCFTA Sub- Committee on TBT for their consideration and adoption.

· Monthly report to AGRA on tasks done, successes and progress made against the work plan

d. Qualifications and Experience

The position, which is opened to citizens of AU Member States, or the direct descendants of AU member States Citizens, requires an advanced university degree (Master’s or equivalent) in an area that is demonstrably related to standards/TBT, such as law, policy or engineering. A combination of relevant academic qualifications and extensive work experience in the area of standards/TBT may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.

A minimum of 13 years of work experience (combined international level experience in the area of standards/TBT (a minimum of 7 years), and international or African standardization institutions either at the national, regional or continental level). . Experience in implementing free trade agreements with the support of international cooperation is strongly desired. Experience working with the private sector in the area of standards is strongly desired. Fluency in English is required as demonstrated by a proficiency test or evaluation. Knowledge of French and other African Union working languages is desirable.

e. Evaluation Criteria

Interested candidates must provide information demonstrating that she/he has the required qualifications and relevant experience to perform the services. For evaluation of CVs, the following criteria will be applied with a maximum score of 165 points:

· Education (20 points)

· Technical experience related to standards/TBT (40 points)

· Experience working with the African Union or regional African standardizing entities (20 points)

· Experience working with the private sector (20 points)

· Language fluency: English (15 points); French (5 points); Swahili (5 points); Arabic (5 points); Portuguese (5 points)

· Experience in the implementation of trade agreements (15 points)

· Experience with international cooperation projects (15 points per year)

Interested candidates are requested to submit their CV and supportive information of their qualifications through the application system. This system will distribute the information to the Selection Committee.

f. Selection Committee

A Selection Committee comprised of 4 people will review all applications and will award an evaluation score to each candidate according to the criteria above. Two members of the Selection Committee will be appointed by the DTI and two by the Standards Alliance (one by ANSI, and one by USAID).

The four candidates that receive the highest evaluation scores will be invited for an interview via teleconference by the Selection Committee. The whole selection period should last a maximum of 30 days.

II. Facilities Provided by the African Union

The Secondee will work where the team for DTI is located (African Union Headquarters, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia). During the time of this program, the Secondee may be required to relocate to Accra, Ghana to the Secretariat of the AfCFTA. Through short missions, the Secondee will service other AU Specialized and Autonomous Institutions located outside of Addis Ababa, subject to arrangements between DTI and the relevant Institutions.

The DTI or the AfCFTA Secretariat will provide office space, workstation / desktop (and potentially a laptop), and access to a shared printer. The Secondee will utilize office stationery and consumables provided by the DTI. The Secondee will be provided access to the African Union or Secretariat premises via an official identification card. The Secondee will be entitled to have an official email account and business cards.

III. Period of Performance

The program will last until September 30, 2021. Travel throughout the time of performance is expected in order to carry out field missions. Travel outside the African continent can only be made with prior authorization following the African Union Commission procedures.

IV. Proposal Preparation

A. Technical Proposal

During preparation of the technical proposal, bidder will provide the following but not limited to:

  1. Proposal Cover Letter (Maximum 5 pages)
  2. Detailed Curriculum Vitae/ Resume
  3. Eligible Academic certificates
  4. Must provide at least three reference letters of clients for similar assignments done in the last 10 years

B. Financial Proposal

All bidding consultants shall provide a monthly rate inclusive of applicable cost. Only the best four candidates will be invited for interviews.

a. Price must be quoted in US Dollars (USD);

b. Bidder must provide a duly filled and signed biodata form as per Annex A: Biodata Form

c. Consultancy fee should be inclusive of all applicable taxes

d. Financial proposal shall be valid for a period of 60 days from the date of bid closure.

e. Professional fees must be separated from reimbursable cost such as accommodation etc.

f. Financial proposal shall be sent as a separate attachment and MUST be password protected. Financial proposal may be opened only for the best candidate.

How to apply:

  • Proposals MUST be submitted via email to AGRA General Procurement: on or before the deadline indicated on the synopsis of the RFP
  • All bidders MUST use the RFP reference number “**RFP- 0197-POLICY-2020**”** in the subject line of the email submission.
  • All bidders must submit Technical proposal (Proposal Cover Letter (Maximum 3 pages), CV, Academic certificates and supporting mandatory documents. These documents shall be submitted separately from the Financial proposal. Use two separate attachments.
  • Neither technical nor financial proposals should exceed 10MB.

    Proposal must be provided in English Language


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