Calls for expressions of interest

AO 221268

Support to the COLEACP Team to evaluate the impact of EU policies, regulatory and non-regulatory initiatives on developing and emerging countries.

Post date: 12/09/2022

Please complete the application form below:

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Terms of Reference - CEI 221268

1. Title of contract

Support to the COLEACP Team to evaluate the impact of EU policies, regulatory and non-regulatory initiatives on developing and emerging countries.
Ref: COLEACP/AO/221268

2. Location

The activities may require travel within partner countries.

3. Main object (CPV code)

All agri-food products and in particular horticultural produces, especially:
03100000-1 Agricultural, farming, fishing, forestry and related products
03100000-2 Agricultural and horticultural products
15000000-8 Food, beverages, tobacco and related products

4. General address of the contracting authority

COLEACP
5 rue de la Corderie
CENTRA 342
94586 RUNGIS Cedex
France

5. Publication of detailed Contract Notice

Internet address of the contracting authority:
https://www.coleacp.org

6. Procedure

The publication of this Contract Notice launches the first phase of the procedure and is intended to allow candidates to express their interest in bidding. An initial evaluation based on an analysis of the expressions of interest will result in the establishment of a shortlist of candidates deemed suitable to submit tenders.

Stages of the procedure:
Phase 1

  1. Publication of the Contract Notice and submission by candidates of their expression of interest
  2. Establishment of the longlist
  3. Pre-selection based on the application file
  4. Establishment of the shortlist

Phase 2

  1. Launching of the call for tenders (sending of tender documents to short-listed candidates)
  2. Selection based on the files provided by those tendering
  3. Establishment of framework contracts with the selected tenderers

The service providers selected following the consultation will be offered a framework contract, specifying a maximum daily remuneration rate per proposed expert. This rate of remuneration may differ from the financial proposal made by the tenderer.

In general, the services of the successful tenderers may start from the day of the signature of the framework contract. The interventions of the successful tenderers may extend until the full consumption of the budget allocated.

7. Background information

COLEACP
COLEACP is a non-profit interprofessional association created in 1973 whose main purpose is to support the development of sustainable and competitive agriculture and agro industry in ACP countries. From an operational perspective, COLEACP is a network and a technical assistance tool for the sustainable and inclusive development of the private sector (micro, small and medium-sized enterprises – MSMEs) based on expertise and an active training system in 50 countries (outside the EU). Since its creation, COLEACP has managed development projects in the agricultural and food sectors of ACP countries, financed by international donors.

COLEACP is organised into multiple departments corresponding to COLEACP’s areas of internal expertise: Technical Assistance, Training, Research & Innovation Brokerage, Market Insights, Information & Communication, Regulations & Standards, Access to Finance, and Network and Alliances.
The AGRINFO programme
The expertise sought under this framework contract relate largely (but not exclusively) to the new AGRINFO Programme.
In January 2022, the European Commission and COLEACP signed a five-year grant contract for AGRINFO (FOOD/2021/427-777), with a total budget of €7 million.
The objective of the programme is to provide enhanced data and knowledge to the 138 AGRINFO partner countries covering EU policies, regulatory and non-regulatory measures, standards, and market trends that have a potential impact on the competitiveness, market access and trade dynamics of agricultural value chains linked to the EU market. AGRINFO partner countries are defined as low-income economies, lower-middle income economies, and upper-middle-income economies, categorised according to the DAC List of ODA Recipients.

AGRINFO will:

  1. Identify and monitor EU policies, regulatory and non-regulatory measures, standards and market trends in agriculture and agrifood that have a potential impact on competitiveness, market access and trade dynamics in partner countries
  2. Generate and disseminate accessible, regularly updated digital information on conditions and requirements – environmental, social and economic – for EU market access and competitiveness
  3. Capture evidence of the evolving impacts of these conditions and requirements on agricultural value chains in developing and emerging economies
  4. Contribute to information sharing and engagement among stakeholders to ensure better understanding of the potential implications and opportunities of new policy and legislation, and to inform policymaking and standard-setting processes
  5. Offer targeted information on demand, to inform the design of strategies and actions to minimise or mitigate negative impacts, and to leverage opportunities

Other projects implemented by COLEACP (at the launch date of this contract)
As part of the diversification of its funding sources, COLEACP is led to implement other national or multinational programs funded by different donors. Thus, in addition to the FFM SPS and FFM+ programmes, COLEACP is also involved in the implementation of several technical assistance programmes/projects in line with the association’s mission:

  • Fit For Market Plus – Mitigating the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic by strengthening the sustainability of the ACP horticultural sector” (FFM+), funded by the European Union (EU) and the Organisation of the ACP States (OACPS) through the 11th EDF.
  • Fit For Market: Strengthening sanitary and phytosanitary systems of the ACP horticultural sector” (FFM SPS), which is funded by the 11th EDF. It is part of the European support to medium and long-term policies aimed at strengthening productive capacities, stimulating innovation and improving the sustainability and competitiveness of the ACP private sector.
  • Strengthening the phytosanitary control and certification system for the fruit and vegetable sector in Togo” (STDF/PG/375) financed by the Standards and Trade Development Facility (FANDC – STDF)
  • “Strengthening of the Phytosanitary Control and Certification System in Guinea” (STDF/PG/498) financed by the Standards and Trade Development Facility (FANDC – STDF)
  • “Improving the sanitary and phytosanitary quality of Penja pepper in Cameroon to facilitate access to international markets” (STDF/PG/593) financed by the Standards and Trade Development Facility (FANDC – STDF)
  • NExT Kenya: Enhancing Kenyan Horticultural Export” (CRIS 414-898) funded by the EU, aims to increase the contribution of the Kenyan horticultural sector to household incomes and improve food security, food safety and nutrition by strengthening the resilience, integration and sustainability of the country’s horticultural value chains.
  • DeSIRA-LIFT: Leveraging the DeSIRA initiative for agri–food systems transformation”, funded by the EC. COLEACP has been identified as leader of the Work Package 2 – Actions in support of CAADP ex–pillar 4 organisations (FARA, AFAAS, ASARECA, CORAF, CCARDESA, GFAR). This work package will identify and implement support for the ex–pillar 4 organisations, in close consultation with these organisations.

This list of programmes/projects is not exhaustive. COLEACP may also be entrusted with the implementation of other additional programmes/interventions during the life of this present contract, which will be used in a multi-programme approach. Please refer to COLEACP’s website to learn more about the activities of the Association.

Specific context and justification of the contract
Challenges facing agricultural value chains in developing and emerging countries
Although most developing and emerging economies have exported agricultural goods to Europe for many years, the evolution of EU regulatory and market requirements has represented a challenge for both private and public stakeholders. Meeting EU regulations and standards is therefore a major determinant for competitiveness and market access for exporting companies, and for domestic and foreign investment in developing and emerging countries.

Some important challenges and bottlenecks are currently impairing the competitiveness and sustainability of agricultural value chains in developing and emerging countries including:

  • Limited data and studies to understand the impact of changes in EU regulations and standards on agricultural value chains in developing and emerging countries;
  • Technical and commercial knowledge and information from developing and emerging countries (and access to the same) is not feeding into EU decision-making and the relevant EU bodies and related agencies;
  • Insufficient engagement with stakeholders in partner countries in consultative processes launched by the EU before the establishment of new regulations affecting imports of agricultural products;
  • Requirements in European regulations and standards that are developed with limited understanding of the context outside of the EU, sometimes resulting in disproportionate impacts on suppliers from developing and emerging countries;
  • Lack of capacity among public and private sector operators to implement the required changes needed to meet new EU regulatory requirements;
  • Limited resources, knowledge and skills in partner countries to identify and capitalise on opportunities created by new EU regulations and standards;
  • Non-compliance with existing sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) measures that limit the ability of partner countries to maintain and/or open new markets in the EU.

Under the overall framework of the European Green Deal, the AGRINFO Programme will identify and document new EU policies, and regulatory and non-regulatory measures, that have a bearing on agricultural value chains in partner countries. All changes introduced by EC DGs (including on SPS) that have an impact on agricultural imports from developing and emerging economies will be monitored as they pass through the regulatory process.

The aim is also to identify any potentially positive or negative impacts that could result from new and amended policies, regulatory and non-regulatory measures on production, business and trade. At the same time, COLEACP will monitor and engage with the global food industry and commercial standards to monitor parallel private sector initiatives (e.g. GLOBALGAP) that support or impact the transition to sustainable agricultural systems.

From among the new and upcoming changes, AGRINFO will identify key areas of interest and concern where there are significant opportunities, or potential risks, for private operators, competent authorities and other key stakeholders in low- and middle-income countries. A number of in-depth evaluations of value chains or countries will then be conducted to assess their potential implications.

These impact assessments will address production and trade as well as social and environmental factors. The impact assessments will systematically weigh challenges against the potential opportunities and contributions made by the affected agricultural value chains to poverty reduction, smallholder inclusion, decent job creation, gender balance, food and nutrition security, food safety and environmental protection in partner countries. The potential for spill-over in terms of potential benefits and challenges at a domestic level in partner countries will also be considered.

8. Market description

Overall market objective
This contract concerns the provision of technical support services for the implementation of COLEACP programs, ongoing or future.
All successful tenderers will be offered a framework contract, which will specify the names of the selected experts and the maximum daily fee per expert. In some cases, and following the evaluation of the proposed CVs, the fees mentioned in the contract may differ from the fees proposed in the financial offer of the tenderer.

The objective of this tender is to create a pool of experts with the sought expertise (as described below under “Type of activities”) who can be mobilised by the COLEACP team when needed. Services will therefore be hired on an “as-needed” basis, and through individual ordering letters specifying the terms of the assignments.

According to the aforementioned, it is important to note that although signing a framework contract under this tender is a pre-requisite to work with COLEACP, it does not guarantee that all service providers will be asked to carry out an assignment.

Principles of intervention
This contract will include service providers who have experience of commissioning, designing and supervising impact assessments, as well as service providers that have the necessary expertise to implement impact assessments, with or on behalf of COLEACP.

For the implementation of impact assessments, COLEACP will preferentially involve service providers that have consultants residing in AGRINFO partner countries (and relevant to individual impact assessments) to ensure that the local context is taken into account effectively (e.g. characteristics of the operators concerned and their environment). This emphasis on the involvement of local expertise is an integral part of the COLEACP philosophy across all its activities.

Themes covered by the market
The themes covered by this call for tenders are as follows:

  • Social, economic and trade expertise appropriate for the evaluation of EU regulatory and non-regulatory initiatives in terms of their economic, social, and trade implications for developing and emerging countries.
  • Technical expertise covering agriculture, livestock, fisheries and environmental impact appropriate for the evaluation of EU regulatory and non-regulatory initiatives in terms of their implications for sustainable production and the environment in developing and emerging countries.
  • Expertise in the study and analysis of agri-food chains in developing and emerging countries: appropriate for the identification of key factors (including agricultural practices, policy context, market structures and market conditions, among others) influencing agricultural value chains.
  • Expertise in commissioning, designing, supervising and implementing impact assessments in agri-food value chains appropriate for the oversight, development and application of case-specific methodologies for determining the potential impacts of a given EU policy/regulatory initiative.
  • Expertise in identification of sector strategies appropriate for the analysis of strategies (for private and/or public bodies) to mitigate risks and/or exploit market opportunities brought about by a given EU policy/regulatory initiative.

Any other sub-theme or new issue that could be relevant to the analysis of impact of EU initiatives on emerging and developing countries is included in this contract.

Tenderers must demonstrate sufficient skills and experience, in at least one of the themes covered by this contract, to enable them to carry out any missions that may be entrusted to them.

Beneficiary partners / target audiences
The direct partner beneficiaries of the programme are (a) competent authorities at national/regional level in partner countries, including relevant sector line ministries as well as official controls; and (b) business membership organisations (BMOs) and national farmer organisations in partner countries. Indirect partner beneficiaries, in partner countries and the EU, are local and international consumers; rural communities; private sector operators (including MSMEs and small-scale growers) in agricultural value chains from production to retail; national/regional technical working groups; public-private stakeholder platforms; certification and standard-setting bodies.

Type of activities
AGRINFO has developed an outline methodology for the impact assessments. This draws heavily on the methodological brief developed in the context of Value Chain Analysis for Development (VCA4D).

The AGRINFO methodology is designed to evaluate EU regulatory and non-regulatory initiatives and identify potential risks and opportunities for developing and emerging countries. It provides a guiding framework to ensure that the overall structure and goals of the various studies will remain consistent. However, experts will be permitted flexibility to adjust the methodology in a way that is most relevant and practical to the specific policy area under analysis.

The methodology is based around the following 3 steps:
i. Framing the economic, trade and agricultural impacts:
Each impact assessment will address a different area of EU policy, and the first step will involve the initial identification of possible impacts to be evaluated. The framing process will also include a preliminary reflection on which supply chains should be analysed, which actors should be the focus of analysis, and what type of investigation is most likely to yield relevant results. It will include (among others):

  • Detailed analysis of identified EU regulatory and non-regulatory initiatives;
  • Identification of most significant legal provisions, policies, changes to agricultural practices, procedural demands, technical requirements under consideration or recently introduced in the EU;
  • Systematic analysis of the possible economic, social and environmental implications of the initiative under investigation for developing and emerging countries;
  • Discussion, where relevant, with European Commission administrators, EU industry associations and relevant actors in the third country/countries under investigation;
  • Analysis of existing trade flows and trends.

The first step also includes collection of information and data on key factors (such as agricultural practices, policy context, market structures and market conditions) that influence the country/countries and agricultural value chain(s) under analysis, by:

  • Reviewing any available existing research (academic, institutional (European or international), industry/trade-sponsored);
  • Identifying all relevant actors in the agricultural value chain and country/countries under analysis;
  • Developing a network of relevant stakeholders in the EU and in emerging in developing countries from public and/or private institutions;
  • Undertaking information collection exercises e.g. interviews, consultations, questionnaires with relevant stakeholders;
  • Gathering, as appropriate, data relevant to the environmental, economic and social context of the agricultural value chain(s) under investigation.

ii. Investigation and analysis:
Step 2 represents the core of the impact assessment process, capturing the potential impacts of a given EU initiative and setting out recommendations in terms of (for example) policy, practical steps to be taken, or technical assistance needs.

Beyond the broad approach set out by AGRINFO, the methodology will need to be adapted according to the EU initiative under assessment. The stages and tools used during the investigation can include (among others) literature research, surveys of value chain operators (including smallholders); targeted consultation of key stakeholders and practitioners in partner countries (including BMOs and competent authorities) as well as in the EU. In each case the contracted party will elaborate and justify the research strategy undertaken.

The investigation and analysis comprises three main elements:
a. Functional analysis: to provide an overall picture of the agricultural value chain, the relationship between actors, and the strengths and weaknesses of various actors in the chain. This basic knowledge of the value chain is essential to understanding the potential implications of EU regulatory change.
b. Critical and evaluative analysis: to establish and assess the specific implications of the EU initiative, and the possible risks and opportunities for actors in the value chain and other key stakeholders. Risks or benefits for key stakeholders will be subject to quantitative and qualitative analysis to consider the scale of these impacts.
c. Constructive analysis: builds on the functional, critical and evaluative analyses to draw up recommended strategies for the country and value chain concerned. In the case of EU initiatives that are expected to bring benefits to the value chain, the constructive analysis should propose strategies that will help to exploit that potential. In the case of initiatives that are judged to present risks, the constructive analysis should propose strategies to mitigate the costs or effects of those developments (policy, technical assistance, practical).
iii. Reporting:
A final report of the impact assessment will provide a concise synthesis of the investigation and analysis including:

  • an executive summary and key recommendations;
  • an explanation of the methodological approach taken.
  • a summary of the functional analysis of the value chain(s)/market(s) analysed;
  • a summary of the key findings of the critical and evaluative analysis, highlighting benefits and risks associated with the EU initiative in question and the potential economic, social and environmental implications for actors in the value chain;
  • recommendations for potential strategies to exploit the benefits and address the identified risks;

The analysis must be synthesised and reported in a way that is easily accessible to the intended end users.
These services must be provided in English, but competence in other languages (including French and Spanish, among others) would be an advantage.

9. Budget

The maximum value of this Contract Notice is € 299,000.

10. Provisional timetable

Date of publication of this Contract Notice: 12/09/2022
Deadline for receipt of applications (expressions of interest): 12/10/2022
Deadline for publication of the shortlist: 25/10/2022
Expected date for sending invitations to tenders: 25/10/2022
Deadline for submission of tenders: 24/11/2022
Date of notification to the successful bidders: 20/12/2022
Expected start date of the contract: (from) from the date of signature by the 2 contracting parties
The final schedule will be included in the tender documents.

11. Eligibility

Participation is open, under equal conditions, to all natural persons and legal entities (participating individually or in a consortium of bidders) who are nationals of the ACP and EU States and/or listed in Annex 1 to this document. A consortium may be a permanent group with legal status or an informal group created for the purpose of a specific call for tenders. All the members of a consortium (i.e. the lead partner and all other partners) are jointly and severally liable to the contracting authority.

A check will be carried out to ensure that none of the candidate bidders appears on any of the Financial Sanctions Lists (lists designating persons, groups or entities subject to financial sanctions by the United Nations, the EU and France).

The participation of an ineligible natural person or legal entity will result in the automatic exclusion of the application concerned. If this ineligible person is part of a consortium, the application of the entire consortium will be excluded.

12. Prohibition on pre-selected candidates forming groups

Any tenders received from tenderers allied with firms other than those mentioned in the shortlisted application forms will be excluded from the tender procedure. Shortlisted candidates may neither associate nor conclude mutual subcontracting agreements in the context of the contract in question. No more associations will be allowed after the shortlist has been established.

13. Criteria for selecting applications

Selection criteria relating to the technical and professional capacity of the bidder will be applied to candidates. In the case of an application submitted by a consortium, these criteria will apply to the whole consortium.

These criteria ensure that the candidate (or the consortium as a whole) has sufficient skills and experience to perform the contract.

The correct observance of the instructions for sending the application file will also be considered in the evaluation.

14. Application form

The bidder should indicate an interest in participating in the call for tenders by applying. If the candidate is pre-selected, the name of the structure indicated on the application file will be used in the shortlist. No further changes (name, consortium or other) will be allowed.
The form is available in English and should therefore be completed in that language.
It includes the following data:

  1. 1. General information on the applicant
  2. 2. The application file:
    • 1 brief description of one and/or more recent and relevant assignments related to the type of activities (4000 characters maximum, spaces included).
    • the names of up to 3 experts who technically meet the expertise requirements and a brief description of their respective skills and experience.
    • at least one professional reference with an email address.

The application must be received by COLEACP no later than Wednesday, October 12th, 2022.

15. Communication with COLEACP

If you have any questions regarding this Contract Notice or your application, please email expert@coleacp.org .
Be sure to include Contract Notice reference COLEACP/AO/221268 in the title of your email when communicating with COLEACP.

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