Job Opening

Posting Title: Project coordinator and Economic consultant– Blue BioTrade in OECS Countries
Department/Office: United Nations Conference on Trade and Development
Duty Station: GENEVA
Posting Period: 02 July 2021 - 12 July 2021
Job Opening Number: 21-United Nations Conference on Trade and Development-159005-Consultant
Staffing Exercise N/A
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity
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Result of Service

The services of the consultant will support UNCTAD efforts to determine the potential of the selected OECS Members for the sustainable production and export of queen conch and conch-based products and to help local stakeholders to better understand the production possibilities and possible uses of conch products, as well as their market potential.

Work Location

Home based

Expected duration

Contract duration is 7 months (full time) over a period of 10 months.
Dates: July 2021-April 2022

Duties and Responsibilities

The emerging concept of “Blue BioTrade” - focusing on marine-based products and services - was launched by UNCTAD, the development bank of Latin America (CAF) and the International Ocean Institute (IOI) at the United Nations Ocean Conference in 2017. Blue BioTrade aligns and merges the approaches of the Oceans Economy and Fisheries Programme and the BioTrade Initiative. The former is a programme developed to advance and implement trade-related aspects of SDG 14 since 2014 and the latter has been tested and successfully implemented since 1996. Additionally, in 2018, UNCTAD-TED developed and rolled out UNCTAD’s Blue BioTrade approach.

In 2020-2021, UNCTAD will be implementing the project “Seizing the trade and business potential of Blue BioTrade products for promoting sustainable livelihoods and conservation of marine diversity in selected Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) countries” (hereinafter UNCTAD-OECS Blue BioTrade project). The project aims at empowering small-scale coastal producers to produce and trade queen conch products sustainably through the application of Blue BioTrade principles and criteria in St Vincent and the Grenadines, Grenada and Saint Lucia. The project considers three subsequent and complementary phases: Phase 1. The elaboration of queen conch product assessments in St Vincent and the Grenadines, Grenada and Saint Lucia; Phase 2. The elaboration of a Regional Blue BioTrade Action Plan based on findings of the country studies and, Phase 3. Elaboration and delivery of technical assistance activities on selected areas.
Against this background, UNCTAD is seeking a project coordinator/economic consultant to coordinate the second part of Phase 1 and Phase 2 of the project and contribute to the production of its related outputs. The main duties and responsibilities of the project coordinator are the following:
A. Liaise with OECS, CITES, and UNCTAD in his role as project coordinator to ensure the successful completion of the Blue BioTrade project and that all outputs are produced to the required quality. Carry out administrative and logistics activities related to the project, as required.
B. In collaboration with a fisheries expert produce two country cases studies on queen conch production and export assessment (Grenada and St Vincent and the Grenadines)
The purpose of the country studies is to assess the potential of the selected OECS Members for production and export of queen conch and conch-based products, including women and men supply-side capacity, legal requirements and market access in the value chain. Also, the objective of the country case studies is to help local stakeholders to better understand the production possibilities and possible uses of conch products, as well as their market potential.
The country case studies must include:
1. Product assessment (including the specie, life cycle, resource availability, as well as a list of all potential product and derivatives with commercial and traditional uses).
2. Analysis of the national, regional and international applicable regulatory frameworks for queen conch (including relevant national and/or regional fisheries regulations, CITES and other relevant Non-Tariff Measures applicable to queen conch products).
3. Value chain analysis that will identify country-specific strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, risks, and bottlenecks for value addition, with a view to profile the country’s competitiveness in the value chain as well as the existing organizations developing the value chain. The value chain analysis will take place during the two main phases and respective sub-phases: harvesting (from harvesting up to landing) and post-harvesting (from landing up to processing and commercialization/export). The value chain analysis should be done based on the BioTrade Principles and Criteria and the BioTrade value chain methodology . The 2020 BioTrade Principles and Criteria are a benchmark for environmental, social, and economic sustainability and inclusiveness. New insight will help identifying windows of opportunity for sustainable and inclusive value chain development for local micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) by incorporating 2020 BioTrade Principles and Criteria into their business plans and activities. Challenges to be identified may include the lack of resource assessments, weak monitoring or permit systems, poor infrastructure, market access barriers and high costs of compliance with standards.
4. Assess the market access potential of the value chain in domestic, regional, and international market as well as market size, competition, distribution channels, among others. The country studies will also identify and provide recommendations on how to seize new market and finance opportunities for relevant stakeholders, including potential buyers (e.g. impact investors such as socially and environmentally responsible entrepreneurs).
5. Consider existing regulations are supporting or not gender inclusion and women empowerment given the context of each target country with a view to identify the requirements and resources needed for gender inclusive value chain development.
6. Take into consideration vulnerable community issues and how these can be addressed to facilitate the participation of vulnerably communities in the value chain.
7. Identify a set of opportunities and proposed strategies and actions with detail on the type of intervention needed, how it should be approached, who should implement it (clarity about roles and responsibilities) and what inputs are needed as well as price and cost estimates.
Additionally the country case studies should consider (inter alia):
• UNCTAD’s Blue BioTrade work and experience, particularly they should be prepared following the updated BioTrade Principles and Criteria and the BioTrade value chain methodology.
• The Regional Queen Conch Fisheries Management and Conservation Plan (RQCFMCP) and progress and the ongoing work of the CFMC/ OSPESCA/ WECAFC/ CRFM/ CITES working group on queen conch and its Scientific, Statistical and Technical Advisory Group (SSTAG).”
• The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) regulations.
• Any additional relevant literature. The studies should build on, and not overlap, available efforts carried out by other relevant organisations (e.g. value chain analysis of queen conch conducted in by FAO and Caribbean Natural Resources Institute -CANARI)
• The stakeholder mapping of the queen conch value chain in beneficiary countries including all relevant actors and the Governance of the value chain (buyer-supplier relationships as well as with other indirect actors of the value chain: government, academia, business support organizations, etc).
• Production data, including geographical information, trade data (internal sales and exports, international trade, including CITES and UNCTAD data in tons and in US$ and per type of product), number of products and markets targeted, and the costs/price associated to each step of the value chain.
• Social-environmental analysis including in the harvesting, transformation and commercialisation stages against Blue BioTrade principles and with the view of providing gender-responsive and vulnerable community actions and policies.
• Any pre exiting analysis on the products and the value chain. If areas that have been already covered by previous recent research (less than 2 years), clear references and when possible, contact information, should be added in order to avoid duplication.

The activities associated to the production of the two country case studies are:
1. Jointly produce, with a fisheries consultant, an annotated outline for each of the case studies report for comments by UNCTAD, CITES and focal points. The goal of the annotated outline is to identify and validate the minimum elements necessary to evaluate the opportunities and weakness of the queen conch and conch-based production and export. In that respect reference data variables and their sources should be clearly specified.
2. Jointly produce, with a fisheries consultant, a comprehensive first draft of each case study that includes the following chapters: a) Executive summary; b) Assessment of country-specific opportunities (e.g. new products, markets/linkages, value addition) and policy needs (e.g. assistance to comply with relevant national, regional and international regulations (incl. CITES) and gain market access) to be addressed in order to create and retain value locally, while also maximizing social and environmental sustainability. c) in-depth value chain analysis; d) main findings, f) Other elements. Each draft report shall not exceed 70 pages (Graphs, tables, references and appendices shall not exceed 10-15 pages all together).
3. Jointly produce, with a fisheries consultant, a final draft of each case study with the same chapter structure as above. The final report shall not exceed 70 pages (Graphs, tables, references and appendices shall not exceed 15-20 pages all together).
4. Jointly, with a fisheries consultant, incorporate comments and suggestions obtained from peer review and validation of country studies as agreed with UNCTAD.
5. Jointly present, with a fisheries consultant, the final country cases at a regional workshop, which will be organised by UNCTAD in 2022 with a view to discuss and validate an OECS Blue BioTrade action plan for queen conch.
For each study, a peer review process will be undertaken by UNCTAD, CITES and the OECS Secretariat in collaboration with a national focal point (NFCs) from a key ministry/government agency in the country. As the process is concerted and collaborative in nature, final drafts of the country case studies will result from timely and regular provision of inputs by a representative set of national stakeholders, including producers and sector associations, who possess hands-on knowledge of the sector and its challenges.
The project coordinator will lead the delivery of the country case studies with the support and inputs of a fisheries experts to he hired in parallel by UNCTAD. The project coordinator and the fisheries expert must work collegially. They will be jointly responsible for the timely and quality delivery of all outputs under this consultancy.
C. Preparation, organization and delivery of a regional stakeholder workshop to present the country case studies. The workshop will be probably held in St Lucia in early 2022.
The activities associated to the preparation, organisation and delivery of the workshop include the following:
a) Identification of relevant participants (based on the mapping of the conch value chain)
b) Preparation of invitations to participants and follow-up regarding their participation
c) Contribution to the diffusion of the workshop to ensure the attendance of relevant stakeholders
d) Identification of and liaison with relevant speakers to facilitate their participation in the workshop
e) Preparation of material to be delivered during the workshop, as requested
f) Preparaion of the OECS Blue BioTrade Regional Plan of Action for queen conch
g) Preparation of a proposed agenda for the workshop
h) Other administrative,evaluation and and logistics duties, as requested.

Qualifications/special skills

Academic Qualifications: Master's degree in international or agricultural economics, international trade, oceans affairs, fisheries or related field is required
Experience: At least 5 years work experience working in the field of international trade, economics, agricultural economics or biological sciences. Experience on issues related to agriculture, oceans fisheries, environment, or sustainability is required. Experience in the Caribbean region and on project management or policy research is desirable.
Language: Fluency in oral and written English is required. Working knowledge of Spanish is an advantage.

No Fee

THE UNITED NATIONS DOES NOT CHARGE A FEE AT ANY STAGE OF THE RECRUITMENT PROCESS (APPLICATION, INTERVIEW MEETING, PROCESSING, OR TRAINING). THE UNITED NATIONS DOES NOT CONCERN ITSELF WITH INFORMATION ON APPLICANTS’ BANK ACCOUNTS.

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