Team: CNFA Europe | Commitment: Consultant | Location: Accra

STTA: Business development under the Ghana business linkages Programme and the ECOWAS export market generation.

Background Information

he Investment Promotion and Business Linkages Activities project in Ghana falls under Key Result 4 of Ghana Employment and Social Protection programme and focus on the following interventions:

·         Key activity c) promoting equity and quasi equity-based investment into small and medium-sized enterprises with a focus on the agribusiness value chain following a structured sequence of investment promotion activities, such as identifying potential investors, preparing investment briefs to key target investors, supporting promotion campaigns, providing investor management. A preferred target of this activity will be ‘Impact Investment Funds’, which measure their return on investment not only in financial terms, but also in terms of jobs created as well as social and environmental impact; and

·         Key activity d) promoting business linkages in selected value chains between large companies and local small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs).

·         The above-mentioned activities will follow a structured approach, including identifying lead companies and viable local suppliers of goods and services, which will be strengthened to ensure specifications for service and product delivery can be met and contractual business relationships with large corporations can be established as well as to facilitate access to finance for the participating local SMEs.

·         The project which is based in Accra but will cover the whole of Ghana has a focus on the agri-business sector and is to be implemented in close cooperation with the Association of Ghana Industries (AGI), building on their significant network of SMEs in Ghana.

·         The direct beneficiaries of the contract are the Small and Medium sized Enterprises, large companies and investors (foreign and domestic notably impact investors). Other stakeholders include Private Sector organisations and the European Business Organisation in Ghana (EBO Ghana) as well as Public institutions such as the Ghana Investments Promotion Centre (GIPC) which should be involved at all steps.

Overall objective, Purpose and Results of the Project

The overall objective of the Project is to contribute to the holistic approach of the Ghana Employment and Social Protection programme by supporting employment and social protection and supporting the agenda of the Government of Ghana (GoG) as far as MSMEs and their development with business development services, advocacy and access to finance predominantly along the agricultural value chain given its employment potential.

The Project is to be delivered in close cooperation with the Association of Ghana Industries (AGI) and its purpose is two-fold:

1.     Organise and implement an Investment Promotion campaign; and

2.     Implement business linkages programmes and generate exports to ECOWAS markets.

Main results to be achieved are as follow:

Result 1: Equity based investment in Ghanaian Agribusiness Value Chains is promoted, and in particular the presence of Impact Investment Funds is increased in Ghana;

Result 2: Business between large companies at the top of a value chain and new suppliers is generated; and

Result 3: Export development in the ECOWAS region is promoted.

All in all, the Investment Promotion and Business Linkages Activities project in Ghana subsidizes the implementation of the Ghana Shared Growth and Development Agenda II (GSGDA II) with specific inputs to the Private Sector Development Agenda and the National Export Strategy.

Objective 

The assignment falls under the scope of the Ghana Business Linkages Programme (GBLP) and the ECOWAS export market generation initiative and has the objective of contributing to the implementation of these project’s main activities, namely the latter whose start up activities are yet to be kick started in a consistent way.

Results to be achieved

The Non-Key Expert’s inputs and outputs will contribute to the following results:

1.     Ensure the ECOWAS export market generation initiative is back on track as by the workplan of the project;

2.     Companies commit to the ECOWAS export market generation initiative and due diligences are performed and export proposals duly drafted for consideration by the project and ensuing match-making with demand from potential importers;

3.     Confirm the viability ofthe ECOWAS export market generation initiative’s original approach and propose eventual corrective measures of technical and/or operational nature. May it not be the case propose a sustainable and realistic alternative.

Under the GBLP the Non-Key Expert may contribute to the drafting of cooperation agreements and assist in the conceptualisation and drafting of proposals for the setup of business linkages programmes. 

Assumptions

·         The TA creates an enabling environment for the easy and swift integration of the Non-Key Expert;

·         The Non-Key Expert understands the focus of her/his intervention and implements all required tasks in a consistent and timely fashion;

·         The Key Expert 3 provides all necessary information and guidance to the Non-Key Expert; and

·         The Non-Key Expert does not commit to decisions or arrangements without discussing them with the TA.

Risks

·         The Non-Key Expert fails to understand the relevance of her/his inputs to the continuation of the ECOWAS export market generation initiative; and

·         The Non-key Expert does not report on actual information and disrupts or misleads implementation and/or effective decision-making.

Scope of the Assignment

Description

The ECOWAS export market generation is a methodical and structured approach to assist companies to enter and penetrate new regional ECOWAS markets. The challenges in Ghana are typical of those facing business in developing economies. Firms are reluctant to undertake major initiatives, such as entering export markets, which can be due to economic factors (excessive risk arising from the perceived high cost in relation to extremely uncertain outcomes), psychological factors (insufficient information and lack of confidence) or comfort in an uncompetitive domestic market. Structured support helps companies overcome these obstacles and the Technical Assistance is implementing a technical approach to generate exports which follows a systematic process.

However, the implementation of the above-mentioned approach has been delayed due to a certain difficulty to manage planned activities timely, prioritise focus and tasks and avoid scattering of efforts. After almost one year into the implementation of the project, there are no tangible inputs-outputs and it is even unclear whether pre-selected companies are willing to export to the ECOWAS region and meet the project’s requirements for assistance. Demand for Ghanaian food products on the side of ECOWAS importers and consumer is yet to be determined which makes it difficult to build an interesting portfolio of potential exporters prior to any pre-selection process. For the time being, the project has only managed to attract companies which attended investment seminars and have submitted applications but do not necessarily have a full-blown profile for exporting. Some are interested in the EU markets while others see it as an alternative to economic and financial viability as the local market’s demand for their products decreases. Regardless, it is still unclear which are or may be potential beneficiaries of the ECOWAS export market generation initiative and whether interest real exists and in what way. In fact, it is likely that agribusinesses are not interest in the ECOWAS region and this should be clear to enable an eventual reorganisation of the approach or even the main activity itself.

The business linkages programme has moved at a slightly faster pace and only some assistance may be required, namely during the discussion process leading to the development and setup of and commitment to a business linkages programme proposal.

The present assignment should, therefore, lay solid foundations for the continuity of the ECOWAS export market generation initiative or to justify eventual changes, either in terms of approach or attractiveness and all within realistic timelines.

Geographical area to be covered

The Non-Key Expert may intervene in all regions of Ghana. 

Deliverables

The assignment should lead to the following deliverables:

·         Workplan of the assignment;

·         A list of companies contacted and status of relation with the project;

·         Due diligences performed and export proposals outlined;

·         Support the drafting of a market study proposal in the ECOWAS region (to be confirmed);

·         Contribute to the identification of 6 selected target markets in ECOWAS countries and develop ToR for specific market researches;

·         Coach AGI staff and suitable and attend / contribute to subject related workshops; and

·         Produce draft MoU to be signed by companies which committed to the project.

Management and coordination

The short-term Expert and Trainer works under the overall management of the Team Leader.

However, her/his scope of interventions and support to the Ghana Business Linkages programme and/or the ECOWAS export market generation shall be agreed in a kick off meeting and coordinated with the Key Expert 3 and supervised by the Team Leader.

Regardless, s/he ultimately reports to the Project Manager at AESA, the Contractor.

Logistics and Timing

Location

The office and operational base for this contract is Accra, Ghana. However, travel to the regions may be required and discussed and agreed on a need basis.

Start date & Contract duration

The intended start date is the 01st of May 2019 and the intervention is for an estimated total of 25 working days in-country. 

Reports

Reporting requirements

The short-term Expert is required to submit one final report at the end of the intervention (see Deliverables section).

Moreover, if necessary, the short-term Expert is required to make contribution to the Service Contract reporting process, namely in her/his own area of intervention.

Submission and approval of reports

End of mission report(s) and other relevant contributions will be submitted to the Team Leader for approval.

Regardless the short-term Expert is responsible for her/his own contributions. As such s/he will be required to provide clarifications or enhance contributions as seen fit by the team leader and or AESA, the contractor, and, ultimately, the Contracting Authority.

Monitoring and Evaluation

Definition of indicators

Satisfactory performance reflected in the timely and professional accomplishment of the activities and tasks falls under her/his responsibility. 

Requirements

  • Higher education degree in Management, Econ Business management, international marketing or other relevant University degree. Alternatively, a minimum of 5 years’ experience in the main topics of the intervention;
  • Competences in the MSME sector and familiar with matters pertaining to rural and agri-business development;
  • Professional experience in the ACP region. Prior working experience in Ghana and ECOWAS region could be an asset;
  • Comprehensive MS/Office literacy (MS/Word 2013, MS/PowerPoint, MS/Excel, MS/Access) skills;
  • Understanding of market economy principles, notions of distribution and value chains; and
  • Practical and pro-active character with good team spirit and communication skills and prepared for or used to assignments in remote rural areas.
  • International experience relating to agricultural value chain development and provision of support to agribusiness industries, namely through (1) export initiatives and (2) business linkages projects:
  • Consistent practical experience in the field of the MSME sector and perform business development services, namely: market studies, due diligences, strategic management, business planning, international marketing strategies and models and their operationalisation;
  • Experience in public and private stakeholder engagement, including the agribusiness private sector;
  • Training capacity and experience to tutor potential replicators;
  • Previous professional experience in Africa in the fields of export promotion and business linkages development. Experience in Ghana and/or ECOWAS region may be an advantage; and
  • Effective ability to work (speak, read and write) in English is mandatory