CONSULTANCY TO CONDUCT A SURVEY ON THE IMPACT OF COVID-19 TO BUSINESS AND INVESTMENT IN THE EAC AND PROPOSE RECOVERY STRATEGY TO THE ECONOMIES

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CONSULTANCY TO CONDUCT A SURVEY ON THE IMPACT OF COVID-19 TO BUSINESS AND INVESTMENT IN THE EAC AND PROPOSE RECOVERY STRATEGY TO THE ECONOMIES


Summary of the Assignment:
 

Nature of assignment

Short term

Location

Will vary depending on the respondents

Timeframe

21 Working days

Reporting

To Executive Director/CEO

 

 ABOUT EAST AFRICAN BUSINESS COUNCIL

 

The East African Business Council (EABC) is the umbrella body of the Private Sector in the East African Community (EAC). It brings together national private sector umbrella bodies, manufacturers, employers, bankers, insurance and transporters associations, chambers of commerce, corporates, and medium and small enterprises from the entire East African region.

 

EABC’s mandate is to represent and promote the interests of the EAC business community, provide value-added services that enhance trade and competitiveness, and to participate actively and positively influence legal and regulatory formulation to improve the business environment. EABC works with the major stakeholders such as the EAC Secretariat, Organs, Institutions and National Governments and provides input in policy discussion while advocating for the implementation of resolutions at the national level aimed at increasing intra-regional trade.

 

BACKGROUND TO THE GIZ PROGRAM ON SUPPORT TO EAST AFRICAN MARKET DRIVEN AND PEOPLE CENTERED INTEGRATION

 

EABC is the regional apex body for the private sector in the EAC, comprising Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda and South Sudan. EABC’s mission is to support the private sector to become competitive in the region and internationally. In order to achieve competitiveness, EABC provides the regional platform. With its observer status at the EAC, it offers authentic lobbying at the policy level. EABC aims at creating a constituency for change leading to sustainable bottom-up policy reforms.

To strengthen the role of EABC in advocating for a stronger private sector in the EAC regional integration agenda, EABC entered a partnership with GIZ-EAC under the GIZ Program on ‘Support to East African Market Driven and People-Centered Integration’ which works closely with the EAC Secretariat, Partner States and private sector representatives to roll out various activities aimed at increasing competitiveness of business operators (members) in the region as well as organizing events aimed at collecting issues that need regional advocacy.  In line with the objectives of the projects, EABC with support from GIZ-EAC would like to hire a consultant to conduct a survey on the impact of COVID-19 on business and investment in the EAC and propose recovery strategy to the economies.

 

CONTEXT

 

With the disruption of imports, EAC stands to be affected by shortages of raw materials, capital goods and consumer goods which were originally imported from China. Case in point, Kenya’s imports from China have fallen by Ksh. 58.64 billion in the period January-February 2020 with a fall in the goods ordered from China in the same valued dropping at 36.63 percent compared to a similar period in 2019.

 

Similarly, all EAC Partner States have registered a decline in export values and this has been attributed to the reduction in demand from Asia, mainly China. For instance, Rwandan sellers of coffee, chilli and other products valued at approximately $10,000-$20,000 sold on Alibaba’s T-mall e-commerce platform are currently stuck, struggling to ship their goods to China. Given that China is among the EAC’s largest source of imports, the outbreak of COVID-19 has disrupted supply chains in all EAC Partner States. With the decrease in imports from China, there is a likelihood of disruptions in the supply of household products. The disruption in the supply of household products will have a negative impact on consumers through hiked prices, and wholesale & retail businesses in the region.

 

The disruption in the supply of raw materials, and intermediate & capital goods will heavily affect manufacturers who source their inputs from China. This has led to a decline in cargo volumes which pass through EAC and international ports, thus having a negative impact on transport and logistic services in the EAC region.

 

RATIONALE OF THE ASSIGNMENT:

 

The EAC Trade and Investment Report of 2018 indicates that Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) into East Africa decreased by 15.9 percent to USD 5.7 billion in 2018 from US$ 6.8 billion in 2017. Overall, FDI inflows to the EAC were concentrated in the manufacturing, construction and services sectors. FDI into manufacturing and construction amounted to US$ 2.1 billion and US$ 1.0 billion in 2018 respectively. China and India continued to be the major sources of FDI into the EAC with inflows amounting to US$ 1.1 billion and US$ 281.02 million respectively.

Meanwhile, the overall increase in the import bill for EAC countries has been attributed to the import of capital goods like transport equipment, building and construction materials for the construction of the Standard Gauge Railways (SGRs), roads, airports, and ports. Most of the capital goods are imported from China since it is the largest investor in these projects with Chinese companies being the main contractors.

The COVID-19 pandemic is expected to impact the EAC construction and infrastructure projects given their connection to China in terms of either investment or contractors. With the disruption of the flow of capital goods from China, most of the projects which are being constructed by Chinese companies will slow down.

 

In addition, following the outbreak of COVID-19, the tourism and travel-related industry is negatively impacted due to the imposition of strict travel restrictions by countries affected by COVID-19. EAC Partner States have suspended air travel services to and from the rest of Africa, Asia, Europe and America most of which are sources of tourists to the EAC region. This has already impacted earnings from tourism as well as air travel services given that Asia is considered by air travel companies as one of the most lucrative and profitable routes.

With the adverse effects, the pandemic has presented to EAC economies, the East African Business Council is undertaking a study to develop a Post COVID-19 Recovery Strategy for the EAC Economies, and come up with recommendations tailored to each Partner State.

The consulting firm or consortium of consultants is expected to conduct a comprehensive assessment of the effects of COVID-19 in each EAC Partner State in all sectors of the economies and provide a recovery strategy that will guide the Partner States in the short and medium and long term. The strategy will serve as a guiding document for EABC in taking lead to advise businesses on the recovery process.

SCOPE OF THE WORK

  • The consultant(s) should,
  • Scan existing documents on COVID-19 available and appropriate for this particular assignment in all EAC Partner States,
  • Conduct literature review of recent study reports, assessments and other published materials to set the context and the current status of COVID-19 within the EAC,
  • Undertake an Impact Assessment of COVID-19 Related NTBs on EAC Trade & Investment Focused on Related Sectors: Manufacturing, Transport & Logistic, Tourism, SMEs and Cross Border Trade,
  • Develop a Post COVID-19 Recovery Strategy for businesses and Mitigation Measures Against Decline of EAC Trade & Investment with clear recommendations specific to each EAC Partner State.

EXPECTED OUTPUTS:

  • EAC Partner States strategy in enhancing their capacity to locally produce raw materials, capital goods, intermediate and final products at competitive prices. This will reduce trade deficits and cushion the EAC Partner States against economic shocks in the global trade is developed,
  • EAC Partner States measures to scale up development of domestic and regional tourism are elaborated,
  • Partnership between the EAC Governments and the private sector in devising alternative means of sourcing products locally and explore new markets is enhanced,
  • Fiscal incentives sectors that are highly affected in order to prevent a total collapse,
  • Clear policy guideline on how domestic companies can be more involved in the mega projects developed,
  • Key stakeholders involved or interested in providing support identified,

 

DELIVERABLES AND TIMEFRAME

The key deliverables include:

  • Inception report detailing the proposed methodology, analytical framework and work plan to carry out the assignment,
  • Draft report on a Post COVID-19 Recovery Strategy for businesses and Mitigation Measures Against Decline of EAC Trade & Investment,
  • A draft report on the Impact Assessment of COVID-19 Related NTBs on EAC Trade & Investment Focused on Related Sectors: Manufacturing, Transport & Logistics, Tourism, SMEs and Cross Border Trade,
  • Organize a validation meeting with EABC Board of Directors and Secretariat,
  • Organize validation workshop in all EAC Partner States,
  • Approved final report of assessment incorporating comments made in the internal validation meeting,
  • Summary of the report
  • Final report

 

SCOPE OF WORK

 

The consultant will work with EABC Executive Director and assigned programme staff to familiarize with the EABC work on COVID-19 Mitigation measures, interventions and recommendations to the EAC Partner States, including all policy briefs and recent work done by EABC on COVID-19. The consultant(s) will also work in partnership with EABC and its National Focal Points and sector associations in all the EAC Partner States.

 

In addition, the consultant(s) should stress the magnitude of the damage on the EAC economies, propose a recovery strategy that responds to the specific needs of the Partner States. Due to the magnitude of the assignment, this consultancy is anticipated to last for a maximum of 30 working days.

 QUALIFICATIONS AND EXPERIENCE

A suitable candidate should hold the following qualifications and key competencies:

  • Academic and Professional Experience: A Master degree or postgraduate qualification in any of the following fields: Economics, Business Administration, International Trade, Trade Policy and Law or any other relevant field is required. 
  • Work Experience: A minimum of ten (10) years’ demonstrated experience in strategy and advocacy related research and regional trade-related issues.
  • Demonstrated work experience in EAC integration matters,
  • Proven track-record in related assignments,
  • Languages: Fluency in oral and written English is required as it is the main EAC working language. Good working knowledge of French and Kiswahili will be an advantage,
  • Additional Skills: Excellent computer skills (Microsoft Office (Word, PowerPoint, and Excel), Email, analytical tools/software for data analysis, experience in working with internet searches, online databases, and data retrieval) are required.

 

THE APPLICATION PROCESS

 

All proposals should be addressed to;

 

The Executive Director / CEO

East African Business Council (EABC)

Ninth Floor, Mafao House, Old Moshi Roa

P. O. Box 2617

Arusha, Tanzania.

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with a copy to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  clearly marked “CONSULTANCY TO CONDUCT A SURVEY ON THE IMPACT OF COVID-19 TO BUSINESS AND INVESTMENT IN THE EAC AND PROPOSE RECOVERY STRATEGY TO THE ECONOMIES”. The proposal should include current curriculum vitae, proposed methodology, work plan and a separate financial proposal.  Applications close on 4th August 2020 at (5.00 p.m.).

  

EABC is an equal opportunity employer thus recruitment is on merit and with no regard to one’s age, colour, gender, marital status, disability or impairment, race or creed. Canvassing shall lead to automatic disqualification.

 

Environmental aspects will be taken into consideration.