A STUDY ON THE SUSTAINABILITY OF TRADE INFORMATION DESK OFFICES(TIDs)

The Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) has received financing   from the International Development Association (IDA) in form of  a Grant  towards the  Implementation of  Great Lakes  Trade  Facilitation Project (GLTFP)  and intends to apply a portion of  the proceeds of this Grant  towards  the  cost of   consulting  services  for

A Study  on the sustainability of Trade Information Desk  Offices(TIDs)”.

The Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) is a regional integration grouping of 21 African States which have agreed to promote regional integration through trade development and transport facilitation.

The Great Lakes Trade Facilitation Project (GLTFP) is a 5-year  project implemented by the governments of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), the Republic of Rwanda, the Republic of Uganda, and the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA).  The overall Project Development Objective of GLTFP is to facilitate cross-border trade by increasing the capacity for commerce and reducing the costs faced by traders, especially small-scale and women traders, at targeted locations in the borderlands. One of the core activities is the provision of information and sensitization support to cross border traders, and more especially the small-scale category as well as the collection of data on small scale trade. The COMESA has supported the establishment of Trade Information Desks (TIDs) at selected crossing points in the region. The TIDs are manned by Trade Information Desk Officers (TIDOs). The core roles of the TIDOs revolve around the provision of information/sensitization of cross border traders as well as collecting information on small scale cross border trade which would otherwise be missed by the officially designated border agencies like Customs.

The COMESA-GLTFP  now invites eligible consulting  firms ( Consultants) to indicate their interest in providing  the required services. Interested consultants must provide information demonstrating  that they  have the  required  qualification  and  relevant experience  to  perform   the  service .

The   overall  objective   of  this assignment is to carry out a study on the appropriate ways and means of maintaining and sustaining the Trade Information Desk Offices (TIDOs) at the borders so that they continue facilitating cross border trade (and more especially for the small scale traders) beyond the timelines of the GLTFP project and/or any COMESA initiatives.

Presently the TIDOs  are  operational  at  the COMESA-GLTFP selected Ten(10)  boarders in the 3 project  countries namely: DRC, Rwanda and Uganda. The focus of   this assignment will mainly be on ten (10) borders in the 3 project countries namely:

(i)  Mahagi (DRC) / Goli (Uganda) ,(ii)  Kasindi (DRC) / Mpondwe (Uganda)

(iii)  Bunagana (DRC) / Bunagana (Uganda) ,(iv) Goma (DRC) / Petite Barrière Rubavu (Rwanda) and (v)  Bukavu (DRC) / Rusizi I (Rwanda).

The  assignment is  expected   to  start  by  first  Week  of  August  to   month end of   September,2019 (2 Months).  The   consultant   will  be  required to  plan and  implement  all  activities  within  the   time   frame.

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