ITC, NATIONAL CONSULTANT (NC) FOR THE WTO TRADE POLICY REVIEW OF MYANMAR


Location : Yangon, Myanmar
Application Deadline :25-Sep-19 (Midnight New York, USA)
Additional Category :Management
Type of Contract :Individual Contract
Post Level :National Consultant
Languages Required :
English  
Starting Date :
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)
11-Sep-2019
Duration of Initial Contract :9 months
Expected Duration of Assignment :November 2019 to August 2020

Background

ARISE PLUS MYANMAR

TERMS OF REFERENCE FOR A NATIONAL CONSULTANT (NC) FOR              THE WTO TRADE POLICY REVIEW OF MYANMAR

Title of assignment: Provision of support to the WTO Trade Policy Review of Myanmar

Duty Station: Myanmar

 

Background

 

ITC is the joint agency of the World Trade Organization (WTO) and the United Nations (UN). It is the only multilateral agency fully dedicated to supporting the internationalization of SMEs. ITC's mission is to foster inclusive and sustainable growth and development through trade and international business development. ITC Headquarters is located in Geneva, Switzerland.

 

ITC projects and programmes contribute to the global efforts to achieve UN Global Goals for Sustainable Development and the Aid for Trade agenda.

 

ITC is the implementing agency for the Arise Plus Myanmar project funded by the European Union (EU). The Ministry of Commerce (MoC) is the focal point for the project in Myanmar.

 

Project objectives:

  • Overall Objective: Inclusive and sustainable trade growth in Myanmar;
  • Specific objective: Increase trade diversification and integration, regionally and internationally.

 

Project outputs:

  • Support to MSMEs in selected value chains: Strengthened capacities of the private sector, notably MSMEs, to exploit the business opportunities offered by the ASEAN single economic space (AEC), EU and global markets, with a focus on a market-led and gender-inclusive value chain approach;
  • Food Safety and SPS compliance: Improved Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures (SPS) regulatory, control systems and quality compliance in line with ASEAN and international commitments, with a focus on selected value chains within the context of a developing harmonised National Food Safety Policy / Structure in Myanmar;
  • Trade policy formulation and implementation: Strengthened trade policy formulation and implementation for meeting regional (ASEAN) and international (WTO, EU) commitments and addressing non-tariff barriers (NTBs) along value chains.

 

Project beneficiaries:

 

  • Direct beneficiaries:
  • MOC which is in charge of the country's trade policy, trade promotion and ASEAN agenda for both trade in goods and services;
  • Other line Ministries will benefit from trainings and capacity building;
  • The private sector and MSMEs will be trained and skilled to improve their competitiveness and increase exports in regional and international markets.

 

  • Final beneficiaries: Stakeholders, including women, along selected sector value chains.

 

 

 

 

Under the Output 3: Trade policy formulation and implementation, Sub Output 3.3: Increase capacity building of trade institutions, the Department of Trade (DoT) within the MOC has requested ITC to hire one International Expert and one National Consultant to support Myanmar’s Trade Policy Review (TPR) at the WTO (activity 3.3.2).

 

Adopted by the GATT Council on 12 April 1989 and subsequently placed on a permanent footing as per the Annex 3 of the Marrakesh Agreement signed on 15 April 1994, the Trade Policy Review Mechanism (TPRM) was established with the aim of contributing to improved adherence by all Members to rules, disciplines and commitments made under the multilateral trade agreements and, where applicable, the plurilateral trade agreements, and hence to the smoother functioning of the multilateral trading system.  TPRM is a system for conducting periodic reviews on trade policies and measures of the Members at the Trade Policy Review Body (TPRB), based on two reports, one produced by the member country under review, and one produced by the Secretariat.

 

While taking into account the countries’ wider economic and developmental needs, their policies and objectives, and the external economic environment that they face, the TPR’s main focus is on achieving greater transparency in, and understanding of, their trade policies and practices. Based on the two reports, the reviews are conducted through submitting/answering questionnaires and discussions at TPRB meetings, through which Members discuss not matters related to the consistency with the WTO agreements, but also other relevant issues such as inward direct investment, competition policy, the energy sector, etc.

 

Some 30 years after its establishment, it is widely recognised that the TPRM has contributed enormously to the transparency of trade policies and practices of members through its process of regular reviews and monitoring, which has made it to be considered as a vital tool for maintaining trust between WTO members, and for the predictability and stability of global trade. As a forum where trade policies can be discussed, information sought and concerns expressed, based on an objective, independent evaluation of the trade and economic situation of individual members, the TPRM has also contributed to improve the quality of public and intergovernmental debate on trade issues. Not only it provides a means of determining whether Members are abiding by the commitments they made in the WTO, it also allows them to measure the extent to which they utilize the policy space permitted within the terms of the WTO agreements and their schedules.

 

More particularly for least developed countries (LDCs), TPRs are particularly valuable in providing them with an opportunity to undertake a comprehensive analysis of their trade policies from the point of view of their development objectives. Through such as an exercise with a wide coverage of the Member's policies reviewed, LDCs are often able to identify shortcomings in policy, as well as to strengthen their inter-agency coordination on trade-related policies and practices. By enhancing their understanding of the WTO agreements and related matters, the TPRs also foster Members’ compliance and integration in the multilateral trading system. Additionally, the reviews play an important role in helping LDCs identify trade-related technical assistance (TRTA) needs, including based on the relevant elements provided in the reports, as well as through the follow-up workshops the WTO offers LDCs to organize in countries after the TPRB meeting, which are aimed at further discussing with national stakeholders the results of the TPR and the need to undertake appropriate trade policy and related reforms, but also at identifying further TRTA and capacity-building needs.

 

While, as stated in TPRB's 2008 report on its Third Appraisal of the TPRM (WT/TPR/229), Members are free to define the structure and coverage of their own reports, an important guideline provided by TPRB's Rules of Procedure is that the Government Reports shall be in the form of policy statements, whose form and length is also to be determined by the Member under review. In addition to providing an analysis of the trade policies and practices in relation to the rules, disciplines and commitments the Member has made under the multilateral trade agreements and, where applicable, the plurilateral trade agreements, the Government Report must follow a rather forward-looking approach by focusing on the trade and related policy measures and reforms which are being developed and will be undertaken in the forthcoming future. As part of the conclusions of the Sixth Appraisal of the TPRM conducted in 2017 (WT/MIN(17)/9), the WTO Members recommended that the Government Reports of LDCs should include a new section highlighting issues that are considered to be of particular interest to LDC Members, including TRTA and aid-for-trade needs and priorities, as identified by the Member concerned and the Secretariat.

Myanmar, as a founding WTO Member that already went through the TPR process in 2014, the three main outcomes of which were the Government Report, the Secretariat Report and the minutes of the TRPB meeting including the concluding remarks by the Chairperson. Myanmar is now preparing for its second WTO Trade Policy Review, with a TRPB meeting scheduled to be held on 12-14 October 2020.

 

To assist Myanmar throughout this process, ITC will hire a National Consultant, to work alongside an ITC-hired International Expert, to support MOC by supporting the implementation of awareness-raising activities related to the TPR process and the production of the Government Report, including through assisting in the collection and review of all relevant trade and other related legislation, laws, regulations, policies, practices, and reforms to be reviewed as part of the TPR process. As the recommended timeframe for the preparation to the TPR is approximately 15 months, the mission of the International Expert in supporting Myanmar from the beginning of this process, is expected to start in October 2019, hence the contract for the National Consultant will be aligned to these dates.


Duties and Responsibilities

The National Consultant is responsible for all submitted documents and must ensure that they are not plagiarized. Any plagiarism, copying or closely reproducing another’s work without accrediting the legitimate author, in the documents submitted would result in a refusal of the submitted document.

The National Consultant will work under the direct guidance and overall supervision of the Senior Officer, TFPB, and the Associate Programme Adviser, TFPB.

 

The National Consultant will be responsible for the below mentioned tasks alongside the International Expert:

 

  1. Undertake awareness-raising activities on the TPR mechanism and process, as well as other relevant WTO- and trade-related matters
    • Assist the International Expert in conducting an awareness-raising workshop to be organized in Myanmar with the assistance from MOC, including development of the agenda and the list of speakers and participants; provision of substantive inputs to the production of the workshop concept note, presentations and other background material; coordination of the sessions; drafting of a workshop report;
    • Participate in meetings for further awareness raising with the primarily concerned stakeholders.
  2. Contribute to the review of all past or expected trade and other related legislation, laws, regulations, policies, practices, and reforms that are relevant to consider as part of the TPR process in relation to Myanmar’s compliance with commitments, disciplines and commitments made under the multilateral trade agreements and, where applicable, plurilateral trade agreements
    • Participate in meetings with relevant stakeholders in Myanmar, with the support from MOC, and assist the International Expert in the collection of all the relevant documentation to be obtained from national sources;
    • Under the guidance of the International Expert, undertake desk research, including through information collected from ITC, WTO, UNCTAD, and other relevant national and international sources.
  3. Assist the MOC and the International Expert in the drafting of the TPR Government Report
    • Prepare background notes, summaries and other research inputs to be requested by and further used by the International Expert for the drafting of the Report.
  4. Produce and submit to ITC an end-of-assignment report on the different deliverables, providing relevant summaries and highlighting achievements, possible challenges, lessons learnt, recommendations and proposed follow-up actions.  

 

 

 

Deliverables and Timelines

 

Deliverables

Timelines

  1. Awareness-raising workshop undertaken (including Powerpoint presentations) and meetings with relevant stakeholders conducted

November 2019

  1. Substantial contribution made to the review work, including through collection of the relevant documentation and related research

December 2019 - January 2020

  1. Substantive support to the TPR Government Report provided

February - August 2020

  1. End-of-assignment report submitted to ITC

August 2020

 

 


Competencies

Education

  • Advanced degree in trade, law, or economics

 

 

Experience

  • A minimum of 5 years of work experience in international trade policy and/or negotiations.

 

Skills

  • Strong analytical and drafting skills
  • Organizational and managerial skills
  • Excellent presentation skills
  • Advanced knowledge and understanding of trade policy issues and preferably WTO related matter, as well as of the national context
  • Capacity to work effectively with Ministries and other relevant government bodies
  • Capacity to work effectively with the ITC team

 

Languages

  • Fluency in written and spoken Myanmar Language and English


Required Skills and Experience

Education

  • Advanced degree in trade, law, or economics

 

 

Experience

  • A minimum of 5 years of work experience in international trade policy and/or negotiations.

 

Skills

  • Strong analytical and drafting skills
  • Organizational and managerial skills
  • Excellent presentation skills
  • Advanced knowledge and understanding of trade policy issues and preferably WTO related matter, as well as of the national context
  • Capacity to work effectively with Ministries and other relevant government bodies
  • Capacity to work effectively with the ITC team

 

Languages

  • Fluency in written and spoken Myanmar Language and English


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.


If you are experiencing difficulties with online job applications, please contact erecruit.helpdesk@undp.org.

© 2016 United Nations Development Programme