Consultancy: Africa Trade and Development Expert


December 4, 2020

What consultancy is open? Africa Trade and Development Expert 

Where is the consultancy based? Remote (managed from Kenya) 

Who is advertising the consultancy? 

Development Reimagined is an independent international development consultancy working with our clients to develop innovative solutions to challenging poverty and environmental issues, with our headquarters in Beijing and with offices in Kenya and the UK. Our people are development, diplomacy, environmental and public relations leaders. We are experts around the globe with a mission to deliver sustainable development and poverty reduction in a dynamic and complex world. Our clients include governments, civil society organizations and businesses small and large, from all sides of the world. In particular, we believe that it is pivotal for developing nations to strategically engage with China, and vice versa. Acting on this belief, Development Reimagined offers bespoke strategic advisory services to Governments and stakeholders seeking to develop robust, holistic and long-term China or “going out” strategies, on various issues – from industrialization, to market entry, to tourism – all with a “sustainable development” lens. 

Reason for Request 

Our client, a foundation interested in creating the space for the African public to engage constructively on international issues, has asked us to expand our work – to be led from Kenya - on African debt in the context of COVID19, as well as work on supporting African countries to get the most benefits out of their relationship with China. Our aspiration will be to utilize COVID19 as a distinct “moment” for change and “reimagining”, to leverage a shift in how African stakeholders assert and direct their agency vis-à-vis the rest of the world and Africa’s development partners, including China. 

The ultimate aim of the work will be to ensure African countries work to use their relationship with China to revitalize and diversify their economies, including through trade relationships. This must be done urgently, to avoid a risk of crippling structural adjustment-like outcomes of the 1990s, albeit involving some new actors. 

This work will need to be strongly data and information based. Using data and information objectively to explore key issues and facts, present it in a way that stakeholders can easily engage with it and use it for their own purposes and key questions, and proactively to solve short and long-term policy issues. 

We are therefore inviting applications for a trade and development expert to work with us remotely to help collate and present this information, both in written form and online. The expert should have strong experience of working with data and information in the past, especially from trade portals and using HS codes – so that they can hit the ground running. 

Consultancy duration 

The consultancy is to start immediately, and is required to be complete within 2-3 months (i.e. by end January 2020). The consultant will work over that period to deliver the outputs. Depending on the quality of outputs and other internal factors, the consultant may be asked to continue work on a further topic, report, etc. 

Key tasks 

This is a short-term, advisory position. It requires work very fast to (in English) write two key documents that will include the following key tasks: 

➢ Provide an in-depth literature review and data – including papers by international organizations and academics - as well as 10 interviews (we will plan for more) with key thought-leaders – the majority from African countries but also from elsewhere including China – on views of the Africa-China relationship to date and its future, including how to chart/structure a “blueprint” or “Africa-China strategy/vision. Substantive proposals will be key to reflect in the literature review.  ➢ Provide a comprehensive review of a two-way history of cooperation between African countries and China using quantitative and qualitative data such as: o infrastructure projects funded by China; 

    • imports and export volumes and trends over time, main sectors of goods traded, value added components, preferential tariff utilization rates (incl. for agriculture/food products/other natural resource products, manufactured goods (incl. textiles, etc) 
    • Chinese FDI trends and private sector actors and FDI to China trends and private sector actors in China; 
    • inbound and outbound tourists; 
    • volume and type of aid projects from China – incl. medical teams, workers and other migrants and Volume and trends of scholarships to/from China and any other education/capacity building initiatives); 
    • leadership visits; number and scope of MOU’s and agreements between government stakeholders; and 
    • media reports on China’s influence and results of perceptions surveys on the relationship. 

➢ Identify China’s Impact to date on Africa’s Sustainable Development Goals;  ➢ Set out the Africa 2063 priority goals and 10 priority African SDGs (and overall strategy – e.g. Vision 2020, Beyond Aid); assess the contribution China is making to those top 5 SDGs – both quantitatively and qualitatively; identify any over-emphasis, any gaps, as well as any types of support China or other development partners offer that may be missing (esp. green growth related).  ➢ Use the analysis plus Agenda 2063 and Africa’s priority SDGs to provide specific recommendations with respect to: o any levers/attracting factors to use in harnessing China’s support for its development path; 

  • An Africa-wide FTA with China and/or other potential inter-governmental tools for negotiation (e.g. BITs, DTAs, geographical indications, etc), 
  • priorities for continental infrastructure financing (e.g. of $100bn USD over 2021-2023 and beyond, under various categories incl. energy, transport, telecoms, industrial park development, etc) and options for negotiating /managing these (e.g. use of RECs, etc) 
  • FOCAC 2021 outcomes – incl. FDI targets, immigration/tourism policies, etc; 
  • how other development actors (e.g. international organizations NGOs, civil society) can also work to bolster the relationship. 

Another member of the team will be dedicated to support the work above including gathering data specifically Chinese data and managing the development of a survey to be conducted amongst key stakeholders. 

Profile required 

You’ll need: 

  • Knowledge of African institutions and Sustainable development priorities; 
  • Experience collecting and analyzing trade data with a specific focus on African countries; 
  • Very strong research abilities; 
  • Qualifications in economics or a related degree, ideally MSc/MA or above; 
  • High confidence with statistics and data – eye for detail; 
  • Able to deliver work to tight deadlines essential. 
  • Creative communicator (esp. for infographics, etc) desirable but not essential; 
  • Knowledge of Chinese-African trade and development relations an asset. 

Remuneration, reporting and other administrative requirements 

Compensation will be made for delivery of the 1st draft report – ideally within 1 month (30%) and the final version report a month thereafter (70%), upon satisfactory completion of tasks as stipulated in the TOR and receipt of an invoice for services provided. The researcher will report to the relevant DR Project Manager. 

Interested applicants should send their resume alone to by Tuesday 8th December.