Analysis of the economic situation of Guinea Bissau

Location : Bissau, GUINEA-BISSAU
Application Deadline :26-Nov-19 (Midnight New York, USA)
Type of Contract :Individual Contract
Post Level :International Consultant
Languages Required :
English   French  
Starting Date :
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)
Duration of Initial Contract :25 days
Expected Duration of Assignment :25 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.


UNDP Country Office in Guinea Bissau is embarking in the preparation of its new Country Program Document (CPD) that will guide the programmatic work of UNDP CO over the period 2021-2025. To that end UNDP CO is looking for an international consultancy to conduct an analysis of the economic situation of Guinea Bissau that will be a critical input in the CPD preparation process.

As recognized by an independent evaluation recently concluded on the current CPD (2016-2020), while focusing mainly in upstream policy, UNDP has not sufficiently invested in downstream work aimed at reducing poverty in Guinea Bissau. The new CPD is expected to address this gap. Reducing poverty will require the creation of more and better opportunities for jobs, entrepreneurships and livelihood. For this outcome to be sustainable an acceleration in the development of a more inclusive country economy is necessary. To that end all potentials for innovative interventions by UNDP need to be explored.

The country context remains complex and with uncertainties and challenges. With a population of 1,6 million people and half of them young (aged 15 to 35), Guinea-Bissau continues to be one of the poorest and most fragile countries in the world, with recurrent political-military crises and where deprivation reaches extremes. According to multidimensional poverty indicators (2016 data), the national incidence of multidimensional poverty (MID) reaches 58% of the population and with large regional disparities. Similarly, UNDP's Human Development Report 2017 showed that Guinea-Bissau ranks 177th out of 188 countries studied worldwide. Unemployment of women and young people, particularly in urban areas, is a major source of concerns and a latent threat to stability and peace since young people are those that are more disproportionally affected by poverty (80% of the poor are young). 

Despite efforts by the UN and the international community, the country is just coming out of yet another prolonged political crisis between 2016 and 2018, while economic developments remains erratic and dependent on the performance in production and export of one single product, raw cashew nuts. In fact, the economy of Guinea Bissau has not gone through any meaningful transformative process since the 80s’ and actually has increasingly specialized its economy around cashew, often at detriment of other more traditional agriculture production and through deforestation. Private investment in Guinea-Bissau remains low, averaging 5% of GDP. However, with few exceptions mainly related to some foreign companies investing in the agribusiness,

most of these investments are made by the public sector in projects funded by external partners. Despite providing for tax reductions for companies whose activities contribute to the promotion of exports or the substitution of imports, the newly adopted investment code has not been able to make a significant difference to attract more investments so far.

These social and economic indicators are however in striking contrast with the natural and human capital potentially available to the country, including forestry, minerals (like phosphate and bauxite among others), water, animal, fisheries, agricultural, tourism and cultural potential. Positioned just below the sub-Saharan arid ecosystems, Guinea-Bissau has plenty of fresh water, arable lands, mosaic of dense and open forests and plant-rich forest savannahs. The country has a relatively vast maritime territory and a rich biodiversity. Its richness goes behind the natural resources by including intangible cultural heritage, particularly in the traditional knowledge, know-how, and creativity of the Guinea Bissau people.

The main questions that the new CPD would like to programmatically address, and for which this consultancy is required, are directly linked to this seemingly contradiction, in the face of which new information, approaches and ideas are needed. The consultancy ought to answer specific questions on how to design future programming, using innovative approaches and methods to spur sustainable economic activity. 

Duties and Responsibilities

Key Questions to be addressed by the consultancy:

In a context like Guinea Bissau characterized on the one hand by deep institutional fragility and a very limited presence of the state, and on the other by existing opportunities for economic development and diversification:

  • Which set of minimum conditions are needed to create an enabling space for new private sector initiatives, including at the community level?
  • How can this be done without counting on a significant role by the government or the existing private sector actors that are an integral part of this prolonged status quo?
  • What are the main stumbling blocks/drivers behind this perpetuating current status that need to be eliminated/addressed?
  • How are the few recently-arrived investors (like in the agribusiness sector) copying with the current environment? Where do you see the positive deviances and is there room for emulation and scaling up?
  • How can the private sector (local or foreigner) be engaged more meaningfully for the economic transformation of Guinea Bissau?
  • What opportunities (entry points) exist for UNDP programming to address these challenges/drivers? What are the foreseen risks? How can the risks be mitigated? How do these entry points relate to the overall programming (i.e. local economic development) of the existing UNDP programme?
  • Where do you see innovation potentials, i.e. through either technology, data, or otherwise.

Specific objectives of the consultancy report:

  • Provide a very succinct but strong understanding of the country economic context and underlying political economy and its inclusion in world markets, including by covering trends and key drivers (positive and negative) mainly through existing data, studies and surveys;
  • Provide a clear understanding of the drives of people inequality and exclusion, identifying any new trends and patterns, and the implications for people’s livelihoods;
  • Identify and analyze key barriers and bottlenecks that prevent the poor and most disadvantaged groups to enter into the market, find/create jobs, and benefit more fully from existing opportunities. This will also entail an understanding on how gender inequalities affect women capacity to exploit existing economic opportunities
  • Assess the positive deviance of existing and recently-arrived investors in the real economy and distills the key factors of resilience and success;
  • Identify which innovation and technology might be already available to jump some of current obstacles and allow for greater economic market opportunities and integration, especially for youth and women; 
  • Assess the private sector ecosystem and governance to identify entry points for engagement with the private sectors and its mid term development
  • Identify some immediate opportunities with high degree of success and capable of creating a culture of success, even if at smaller scale, based on which build bigger victories over time, both for urban and rural areas
  • Identify and analyze policy and provide evidence-based strategic options/recommendations to address some of challenges identified, build people’s resilience, optimize the positive drivers and eliminate/limit the negative drivers;
  • Analyze few concrete opportunities and challenges for UNDP programming in the economic sector in term of supporting a more enabling environment to spur economy development and entrepreneurships, create jobs, better incomes, and ultimately reduce poverty.


  • Strong communication capacity;
  • Excellent analytical and synthesis capacity;
  • Recognized ability to work in multidisciplinary and multi-sectoral teams

Required Skills and Experience


  • Post graduate degree in economics, business administration, development studies, or equivalent;
  • Diploma in Design Thinking an advantage.


  • Minimum of 10 years of experience in the domain of economic diversification, private sector development, sustainable and inclusive economic development, private sector engagement, inclusive markets, local economic development,


  • Fluent in English and/or French;
  • Portuguese language an asset.

The procuring UNDP entities will choose among one of these two mechanisms. The lump sum approach is the preferred method, as it clearly links deliverables and payments transferring any unforeseen risks for the completion of the deliverable to the consultant. Once the mechanism has been selected, the other one shall be deleted to avoid any misunderstanding]

Lump sum contracts

The financial proposal shall specify a total lump sum amount, and payment terms around specific and measurable (qualitative and quantitative) deliverables (i.e. whether payments fall in installments or upon completion of the entire contract). Payments are based upon output, i.e. upon delivery of the services specified in the TOR.  In order to assist the requesting unit in the comparison of financial proposals, the financial proposal will include a breakdown of this lump sum amount (including travel, per diems, and number of anticipated working days).

Contracts based on daily fee

The financial proposal will specify the daily fee, travel expenses and per diems quoted in separate line items, and payments are made to the Individual Consultant based on the number of days worked.


All envisaged travel costs must be included in the financial proposal. This includes all travel to join duty station/repatriation travel.  In general, UNDP should not accept travel costs exceeding those of an economy class ticket. Should the IC wish to travel on a higher class he/she should do so using their own resources.

In the case of unforeseeable travel, payment of travel costs including tickets, lodging and terminal expenses should be agreed upon, between the respective business unit and Individual Consultant, prior to travel and will be reimbursed.

The procuring UNDP entities will choose among one of these two evaluation methods prior to submit the have the Individual Consultant Procurement Notice. Once the evaluation method has been selected the other one shall be deleted to avoid any misunderstanding]

Individual consultants will be evaluated based on the following methodologies:

  •  Lowest price and technically compliant offer.

When using this method, the award of a contract should be made to the individual consultant whose offer has been evaluated and determined as both:

  • Responsive/compliant/acceptable; and
  • Offering the lowest price/cost.

“responsive/compliant/acceptable” can be defined as fully meeting the TOR provided.

 Cumulative analysis

When using this weighted scoring method, the award of the contract should be made to the individual consultant whose offer has been evaluated and determined as:

  •  Responsive/compliant/acceptable, and
  • Having received the highest score out of a pre-determined set of weighted technical and financial criteria specific to the solicitation.

* Technical Criteria weight; [To be determined]

* Financial Criteria weight; [To be determined]

Only candidates obtaining a minimum of XXX point would be considered for the Financial Evaluation.

Technical Evaluation Criteria:

  • Professional Experiennce 40%
  • Methodological approach including on the level of innovation/creativity of the proposal 60%.

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