Re-advertisement - Consultancy to Prepare a Policy Paper on Trade for Peace and Resilience in South Sudan


Location : Juba & States, SOUTH SUDAN
Application Deadline :18-Apr-19 (Midnight New York, USA)
Additional Category :Sustainable Development and Poverty Reduction
Type of Contract :Individual Contract
Post Level :International Consultant
Languages Required :
English  
Starting Date :
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)
01-May-2019
Duration of Initial Contract :30 working days
Expected Duration of Assignment :30 Working days

UNDP is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality and culture. Individuals from minority groups, indigenous groups and persons with disabilities are equally encouraged to apply. All applications will be treated with the strictest confidence.

UNDP does not tolerate sexual exploitation and abuse, any kind of harassment, including sexual harassment, and discrimination. All selected candidates will, therefore, undergo rigorous reference and background checks.


Background

The Republic of South Sudan is faced with a severe multifaceted crisis and heightened vulnerability to fragility encompassing political, economic, social and humanitarian dimensions. The recent outbreak of the violent crisis in Juba on 8 July 2016 followed by a declaration of ceasefire on 11 July was unforeseen and constituted a setback to the smooth implementation of the Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan (ARCSS). More than 4 million people were displaced as a result of the conflict and resulting to significant deterioration in the quality of life. On the economic front, the country is reeling under a deep macroeconomic crisis, high inflationary pressures, steep decline in value of the South Sudanese Pound vis-a-vis the US Dollars (as well as other major international currencies) exacerbated further by the oil price volatility and oil production shocks. 

Despite challenges and concerns, the government has sought to pursue key public finance management reforms as enshrined in Chapter IV of ARCISS and has passed a progressive 2016/17 budget with bold fiscal measures aimed at restoration of macroeconomic stability. It has also undertaken some economic and fiscal stabilization measures recently, several of which seek to address the provisions of the Agreement on the Resolution of Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan (ARCISS). The economic measures announced thus far including through the budget of 2016/17 and they include: increasing revenue (raising taxes, reduce exceptions, strengthen tax administration, and increase oil revenues); reducing expenditure (payroll, discretionary, and government contracts); cash management (cancel all outstanding cheques, cash committee, arrears repayment plan); and strengthening monetary policy and banking system (capital and reserve requirements, renegotiate loans, and financial audit) as also progressively consider removing distortions in oil pricing and subsidies. Further a National Revenue Authority is being established to ensure competent and effective oversight mechanism that controls revenues collection.

South Sudan’s trade policy and regulatory frameworks are under review and finalization.  There exists a draft trade policy document prepared by South Sudan EAC accession secretariat which is being updated in a consultative manner. 

South Sudan is a landlocked, import dependent economy and is heavily reliant on oil exports. The economy is largely undiversified and a process of structural transformation through the process of industrialization and trade diversification is an urgent priority for the Government of South Sudan. 

Given its dominantly young population comprising more than 60 percent of the total population of 12 million people, trade can be an engine of growth, industrialization and job creation in the country. This will also help to strengthen the economic foundations for peace, address widespread discontent particularly amongst the youth and help to move the country towards stabilization and recovery. 

With the signing of the revitalized Peace Agreement, there is renewed hope that peace will return and the aspirations for a better quality of life that is sustainable will be within reach. To achieve sustainable development, it is essential to boost the resilience capacities of households, businesses and society from the impact of shocks and stresses. A partnership between donor partners, UN agencies, and NGOs has taken root and is geared towards making the shift from emergency to recovery and resilience through the development of the absorptive/coping, adaptive, and transformative resilience capacities of the people. This new way of thinking and working is necessary for the country to move to the sustainable development pathway. A peaceful and stable policy and investment framework while affording ease of doing business, a streamlined and enabling taxation system, and a people-centered, locally driven development approach is a sine-qua-non  to achieve this ambitious goal. 


Duties and Responsibilities

Scope of Work

The consultant will report to the Undersecretary, Ministry of Trade and Industry and the Senior Programme Advisor, UNDP while closely liaising with the EIF Coordinator and the National Implementation Unit under the Department of External Trade of the Ministry of Trade and Industry, with overall technical and logistical inputs and support from UNDP.  

While reviewing the current economic situation, the draft trade policy documents including the Diagnostic Trade Integration Study, country resilience framework, the consultant will undertake: 

A brief review of the history of conflict in South Sudan – international conflict leading to independence, and civil conflict since 2013.

Review the geographical footprint of conflict and resilience-building in South Sudan and discuss:

  • The socio-economic impact of the conflict inclusive of trade disruptions -e.g. blockage of routes and borders, seizure of merchandise; fall of agriculture production; disruptions in imports and exports; food insecurity, etc.
  • The economic resources around the conflict areas and how they have been used or not to influence/feed conflict
  • The shift from emergency to a resilience approach and its impact in facilitating trade and economic revitalization vis-à-vis the impact of humanitarian/emergency on trade development

What opportunities does trade offer for addressing the consequences of shock and stresses (conflict, economic, climate) in South Sudan and in sustaining peace and resilience-building? This implies a discussion on the linkages between trade, conflict/economic shocks/climate impacts, and resilience, applied specifically to the case of South Sudan. Some examples may include: trade bringing vital economic opportunities to border areas; facilitating exchange and building trust across ethnic lines; facilitating trade with neighbouring countries which may diminish their involvement in the internal conflict; how trade builds the resilience capacities of people and how resilient communities are able to enhance trade in-country and between communities and states, etc. 

Under what conditions can trade facilitate pathways out of fragility and to sustainable development and resilience? This would imply a discussion on areas of reform/investments so that trade can be a tool for peace, sustainable development, and resilience-building, including promoting economic diversification to address vulnerability arising from oil dependence and ensued revenue volatility; promoting modernization of the agriculture sector to enhance income in rural areas and among the poor; creating transparent and broad-based consultations mechanisms involving stakeholders in policy formulation and implementation; creating opportunities for youth and women who also play a critical role on peacebuilding; adhering to international initiative such as Extractives Industries Transparency International (EITI), etc.  

Discuss key policy initiatives by the Government and development partners that seek to enhance the contribution of trade for peace, sustainable development, and resilience-building: including accession to the EAC and the WTO, products produced in South Sudan; etc. 

In this regard, provide key policy recommendations to strengthen the agenda of trading for peace and resilience;

 

Methodology

The consultant will undertake a desk review of existing analytical work on the relationship between trade and fragility and conflict; relevant programmes in South Sudan related to private sector and trade development, existing draft trade policy documents including the Diagnostic Trade Integration Study (DTIS), review of programmatic frameworks and studies on resilience, etc.

The consultant will implement a participatory and consultative approach engaging government officials, development partners; private sector representatives, including SMEs; women and youth groups, etc. to gather views and perspectives on the various aspects to be covered by the study.

The consultant will visit two or three border areas particularly relevant for international trade exchange, to gather the view of the local population on the importance of international trade for daily life and livelihoods; significance of trade in boosting household and community resilience, implications of conflict on economic activities, resilience capacities and conflict in the area, and suggestions about reforms/improvements to enhance the contribution of trade to the local economy.

Deliverables

  • Inception report after analytical review of relevant documentation including proposed outline of the report
  • Presentation of preliminary findings to ministry of trade and selected stakeholders in the area of trade for peace and resilience. First draft of the report.
  • Draft final Trade for Peace and Resilience in South Sudan paper (after incorporation of comments)


Competencies

  • Excellent writing and oral skills in English;
  • Strong analytical skills;
  • Ability to interpret results and make recommendations;
  • Effective communication skills and proven leadership capacity; 
  • Ability to work in multi-cultural, multi-disciplinary environments; 
  • Ability to work under tight deadline;
  • Sound negotiation and representational skills;
  • Integrity and adherence to UN values.


Required Skills and Experience

Education

  • Advanced university degree (master’s degree or equivalent) in economics, international relations or related field.

Experience

  • At least 6 years of demonstrated track record and experience on trade and or development policy;
  • Strong evidence of understanding and experience in trade, regional economic integration and WTO accession, resilience, including policy research and applied aspects;
  • Experience in producing policy papers for a government or an international organisation;
  • Knowledge of trade-related and relevant sectoral issues in South Sudan or East Africa;
  • Experience in working with Sub-Saharan African countries. Previous experience in South Sudan is an asset; 
  • Experience in working in post-conflict context is a strong advantage;
  • Knowledge of the UN system is an asset. 

Language

  • Excellent writting and Oral Skills in English.



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