Job Opening

Posting Title: Consultancy to identify potential customers and industrial value chain partners for Seychelles' MSMEs operating in the Circular and Blue Economy Sectors and to Train the MSMEs on Export Development to
Department/Office: Economic Commission for Africa
Duty Station: KIGALI
Posting Period: 24 September 2022 - 09 October 2022
Job Opening Number: 22-Economic Commission for Africa-190902-Consultant
Staffing Exercise N/A
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity
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Result of Service

This project shall have 3 main deliverables:
• An inception report outlining the research methodology; identifying the main products and value chains that can be positioned for expansion to overseas markets; identifying the leading countries in the region which operate across the selected value chains and/ or import the products manufactured by MSMEs in Seychelles; and, explaining the approach to identify the most relevant operators for doing business with the MSMEs in Seychelles.
• A report detailing the profiles of each of the identified buyers or partners of the Seychelles’ MSMEs, their expectations (including cost), the requirements for doing business with them. The report should contain a preliminary match-making exercise to connect corresponding buyers/ partners with the relevant MSMEs. It should also contain an analysis of the gap existing between what the MSMEs from Seychelles can currently offer, and the demands of the potential future buyers and partners.
• A Dissemination Workshop on the outcome of the report, and a Training Workshop to train the MSMEs in the blue and circular economy on the gaps they must overcome in order to tap into these pre-identified opportunities existing in the region.

Work Location

Seychelles

Expected duration

Successful International Consultant will be recruited for a period of three (3) months from the date of Contract of Service; and will be paid as per the following payment trenches:
(i) 33.3% of total Consultancy Service Fees upon submission and approval of an inception report defining: the entire research methodology; identifying the main products and value chains that can be positioned in overseas markets; and, identifying the leading countries in the region which operate across the selected value chains and/ or import the products manufactured by MSMEs.
(ii) 33.3% of total Consultancy Service Fees upon submission and approval of a report containing: the profiles of each of the identified buyers or partners; the requirements for doing business with them; a preliminary match-making exercise between buyers/ partners and MSMEs; and a gap analysis of the offering of the MSMEs from Seychelles and the demands of the potential future buyers/partners.
(iii) 33.3% of total Consultancy Service Fees upon delivery of a dissemination workshop of the outcome of the report, and a training workshop.

Duties and Responsibilities

The United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) Sub-Regional Office for Eastern Africa (SRO-EA) has benefited from the support of the United Nations Joint Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Fund to further the sustainable development agenda of Seychelles, by focusing on capacitating its circular economy sector. The UN Joint SDG Programme aims to service this demarche through a gender-responsive and evidence-based approach.

Being a small island developing state whose land area extends over a total of 455km2, Seychelles has limited capacity to handle the solid waste generated by its population and industries. At present, it is estimated that Seychelles produces 80,000 tons of solid waste annually, out of which 90% are landfilled. The amount of waste generated is expected to increase by 50% by 2030.

Although the circular economy is still a new concept in the policy realm of Seychelles, pressured by this imminent environmental threat and crisis, Seychelles developed a Solid Waste Management Strategy 2020-2035. This plan emphasizes a need to practice waste sorting and segregation, develop the recycling sector, and encourage private sector investment in “critical waste management infrastructures”. All three recommendations require the critical “agency” of the private sector-- either as a contributor at the bottom of the scale: as an operator, or as a driver of waste management practices.

While the activities and contribution of large enterprises which operate in the circular economy in Seychelles (for example, recyclers and exporters of waste) is documented, not much information is available about the participation of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) of the same sector. However, as stakeholders from the public sector and the civil society confirm that there are several small operators in the circular economy sector, they lament the fact that these enterprises do not have adequate access to support and information to allow them to expand their activities and widen their commercial horizons.

With an Exclusive Economic Zone of 1.35 million km2, Seychelles’ expansive seas also carry potential to contribute to circular symbiosis activities. The Blue Economy allows the optimization of unutilized or underutilized sea-based resources which could act as alternatives to polluting materials. In 2020, the Blue Economy contributed to only 27.4% of Seychelles’ GDP and yet 41% of its employment. An activation of Blue Economy activities will increase its contribution to national revenue, employment, as well as reduce dependence of the country on the use of other imported entrants to manufacturing processes as well as in energy production. Micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) are very active in Seychelles’ Blue Economy sector. Though mostly popular in fisheries and tourism, the structural support available to Blue Economy activities has promoted a diversification into more innovative projects. Nonetheless, these MSMEs and start-ups lack visibility and access to overseas markets.

A liberalization of the continental market under the Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) will create new opportunities for Seychelles’ MSMEs operating in the circular economy and blue economy sectors. For these MSMEs, along with opening doors to new markets for their services and for their transformed products, the AfCFTA is also a platform to source intermediate goods/waste for transformation and establish regional value chains. It is in this spirit of an enlarged business potential, which can secure an economy-of-scale operation for MSMEs of the circular and blue economy sectors, that this study will be conducted.
Under the UN Joint SDG Programme and with the support of the Fund thereunder, UNECA SRO-EA seeks to recruit a consultant to identify opportunities for value chain development and customer potential for MSMEs of the circular and blue economy in Seychelles, and to train the MSMEs on how to access these opportunities and clients identified.

This consultancy aims to identify potential partners and customers for the Seychelles MSMEs operating in the blue economy and circular economy sectors to allow them to establish regional value chains and expand their customer-base. An identification of potential partners for the development of value chain involves understanding the different transformations that is possible from the resources worked or collected by the MSMEs currently operating in Seychelles, and assessing the willingness of the potential partners to engage in this activity, and on which conditions. It furthermore involves identifying potential customers who are interested to buy the manufactures of the circular and blue economy MSMEs from Seychelles, at which prices, capacities, and also under which conditions.

Having gathered an understanding of the requirements of buyers and partners identified, the consultant will develop and dispense training to the Seychelles’ MSMEs in circular and blue economies with the aim of equipping them with the knowledge and skills they will need to tap into those opportunities.

The objectives of these two activities are:
• To gauge the receptiveness of overseas markets to buy the blue and circular economy products of the Seychelles’ MSMEs, keeping in mind their particularities in terms of cost, production quantities, standards, and norms’ compliance etc.
• To assess the extent to which the development of regional value chains in the blue and circular economy is possible, and under which conditions
• To improve the skills and knowledge of MSMEs operating in the blue and circular economy in Seychelles so that they are ready to tap into existing opportunities

DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES:
Under the general supervision of the Head of Cluster of the Sub Regional Initiative section, and the direct supervision of the Economic Affairs Officer, the successful Consultant will have the following list of duties and responsibilities:
• Use the database of MSMEs operating in the circular and blue economy in Seychelles to note the products that can be positioned for export, and those value chains which can be positioned for regional linkages.
• Conduct a match-making exercise of the supply from Seychelles, and the demand of the same from countries in the region in order to identify the five leading countries of the region which have more potential to develop trade or partnership linkages with the MSMEs from Seychelles (Recommended use of International Trade Center ITC Export Potential Map)
• Conduct groundwork in the chosen countries to identify the potential buyers and partners of the blue and circular economy MSMEs in Seychelles
• Engage with these potential buyers and partners to understand their expectations (their role, price range, production capacity, quality, target audience, amongst others) and gauge their interest in doing business with MSMEs in Seychelles. In the case of partners on value chains, understand the value addition process and its structural and cost implications for a potential MSME partner from Seychelles.
• Understand the intricacies of doing business with those pre-identified buyers and partners and develop training content for MSMEs in Seychelles in order to build their capacity to capture the potential opportunities for business development presented by these buyers and partners.
• Draft a report on the approach used, and the potential buyers and partners identified for each MSME activity in each of the countries and detailing their expectations and conditions of business and trade. The report should also identify the gap between the offering of the MSMEs from Seychelles and the expectations and requirements of the potential buyers and partners.
• Conduct a Dissemination Workshop and a Training. Based on the gaps identified between the demand and supply, develop training content, and conduct a workshop for MSMEs operating in the blue and circular economy in Seychelles to build their knowledge and skills so as to better access these buyers and partners.

Qualifications/special skills

Academic Qualifications: Advanced university degree (Master's degree or equivalent) in international trade, marketing, or related area is required. A first level degree (Bachelor's or equivalent) in the specified fields with two additional years of relevant work experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree. Doctorate degree in the specified fields is an advantage.

Experience: A minimum of 10 years of experience in business intelligence or marketing, with special focus on business-to-business networking or related field is required.

Mandatory: The candidate will be required to provide evidence of a strong and updated network amongst businesses across at least 5 countries in Africa.

The following technical competencies are desirable:
• Proven experience in conducting B2B and B2C networking across sectors
• Strong understanding of African markets; and,
• Demonstrated knowledge of circular and/or blue economy will be an advantage.

Language: English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For this consultancy assignment, fluency in English IS REQUIRED. Knowledge of the other is an advantage. Knowledge of another UN Language is an advantage.

Additional Information

In the event that the International Consultant requires the services of subcontractors to perform any obligations under the contract, at the time of application, the Consultant shall submit to the United Nations, the profile of the proposed sub-contractor and the value of the contribution of the sub-contractor to the said assignment. The Consultant shall obtain prior written approval of the United Nations for any such subcontractors.

The United Nations may, at its sole discretion, reject any proposed subcontractor or require such subcontractor’s removal without having to give any justification therefor, and such rejection shall not entitle the Consultant to claim any delays in the performance or to assert any excuses for the non-performance of any of its obligations under the contract.

The Consultant shall be solely responsible for all services and obligations performed by its subcontractors. The terms of any subcontract shall be subject to and shall be construed in a manner that is fully in accordance with all of the terms and conditions of the contract

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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