Consultant for a study on the potential of the smartphone Value Chain to promote intra-regional trade and manufacturing in Africa at United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA): (Deadline 27 July 2021)

Consultant for a study on the potential of the smartphone Value Chain to promote intra-regional trade and manufacturing in Africa at United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA): (Deadline 27 July 2021)

Result of Service

-A report on the the potential of the smartphone Value Chain to promote intra-regional trade and manufacturing in Africa

-Presentation of the the report at an AEGM

Work Location

Rwanda

Expected duration

The expected duration of the assignment is 3 months from the date of signing of the contract.

Remuneration:

The total fees for the assignment will be US$ 20,000 to be paid as equal instalments of USD 5,000
– Deliverable 1: An inception report setting out the understanding of the tasks, issues to be addressed, objectives, methodology,
sources of information and workplan;
-Deliverable 2: Draft report on on the Potential Impact of the AfCFTA on Smart Phone Value Chains in Africa
-Deliverable 3:Presentation of the report at the AEGM ;
-Deliverable 4: Final report on on the Potential Impact of the AfCFTA on Smart Phone Value Chains in Africa

Duties and Responsibilities

Background

The Agreement establishing AfCFTA signed in Kigali, Rwanda, on 21st March, 2018 is a key milestone in Africa’s integration agenda. The AfCFTA is expected to be a key engine of economic growth, industrialization and sustainable development in Africa in line with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development adopted by the United Nations General Assembly, and the African Union (AU) Agenda 2063 for “The Africa We Want”. Through the removal of tariffs and non-tariff barriers, the AfCFTA seeks to address the fragmentation of African markets. The resulting integrated markets at the continental level will create an environment conducive to efficiency gains from economies of scale, increased competitiveness, better access to resources, and efficient use, including labour, capital, and technologies. These will culminate in greater diversification of African economies and promotion of regional value chains (RVCs). The development of RVCs, in turn, would strengthen Africa’s position in global value chains while creating more value-added content at national and regional levels.

A critical value chain for Eastern Africa is Smartphone because it is the leading platform for digital trade in Africa. However, Smart Phone use in Eastern Africa remains relatively low. In 2019 the average subscription rate was 70 per 100 people in the region compared with an average of 87 and 111 per 100 people for Africa and the World(ITU 2021). It is therefore important to study the implications of the AfCFTA on the Smartphone value chain in Eastern Africa. Against this background, the ECA (SRO-EA) seeks to recruit a consultant to study the Potential Impact of the AfCFTA on Smart Phone Value Chains in Eastern Africa.

Duties and responsibilities

Working under the overall guidance of the SRO-EA Director and the Chief of the AfCFTA cluster and the lead consultant, the consultant is expected to produce a study on the Potential Impact of the AfCFTA on Smart Phone Value Chains in Africa.

The main objective of this study is to explore the potential of the smartphone VC to promote intra-regional trade in Africa in the AfCFTA context.
The study will try and get a better understanding of (i) the GVC of the smartphone, (ii) Africa’s integration to that GVC and (iii) how the AfCFTA could contribute to better position Africa into that GVC.
More specifically, the study will seek to:
i)- Understand the Smartphone market in Africa and the rest of the world, looking at both demand and supply factors.

-What is the demand in Africa, and what are the sources of supply?
-What are the main determinants of demand in smartphones?
-Who are the main players/companies in the global and African market?
-Which brands or technological specifications (High end vs low end) dominate the market? -How has the market been evolving? How does Africa compare to the Rest of the World?

ii)-Identify the global geographic distribution of the mobile phone production processes by;
– Carrying out a trade analysis to trace the route of the products that make up the mobile phone value chain;
– Identifying the main production hubs and the firms to determine the competitive structure of the mobile phone VC
-Describing the production/transformation process and stages of a smartphone GVC :
– Describing the components required ;
– Describing the different activities required, from conceptualization of the product to packaging and after-sales activities. ?
– How much revenue is generated in the GVC, and how is it distributed across firms?
– How is the smartphone industry-financed? Who are the investors? State or Private sector? FDIs? Capital markets? etc.
– What are the trends in FDIs in the smartphones GVC in Africa and globally?
– What are the determinants of FDIs in smartphones?
– What are the possible linkages between the smartphone industry and other industries (in electronics? For example, in the service
sector (app development, e-commerce, )fintech, etc.

iii)- Understanding the extent of integration of Africa into the smartphone GVC and explore the potential for improvement by doing the following;
– A value chain specific trade balance analysis,
– Provide a descriptive analysis of the firms present on the African continent, which can contribute to the regional development of the
mobile phone VC and foster inter-regional trade.
– Which segments of the VC is Africa intervening? Which countries are concerned, broadly? -Where do the inputs come from?
– Where is the investment coming from? State? FDIs, other?
– How much of the VC is Africa capturing?
– What is the potential for Africa to gain more? On which segment of the VC? Under which condition?
– Can investing in smartphone VC contribute to developing other industries in Africa (exploring linkages with other industries)?
– Different specificities of the smartphone value chain to be summarized through infographics
– Understand the capital and assets required to enter the value chain;
– Determine the baseline to carry out a trade analysis per transformation processes, which in turn will provide the grounds to determine the potentialities for regional sourcing and sales strategy.

iv)- The Rwandese case study: identify opportunities for regional and national sourcing of inputs to ensure the transition from plant solely focused on assembly to local and regional production.

v)- Make policy recommendations on how best to support the smartphone value chain

Qualifications/special skills

Academic Qualifications: Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or above) in Economics, ICT, Trade, Development studies or related fields is desirable
Experience: The candidate should have a minimum of 4 years of proven experience in ICT policy, trade policy formulation, value chain analysis, regional integration and development, or related areas.
Experience with similar assignments on Value Chain analysis would be an advantage.
Language: English and French are the working languages of the United Nations. For this post, fluency in English(both oral and written) is required.

No Fee

THE UNITED NATIONS DOES NOT CHARGE A FEE AT ANY STAGE OF THE RECRUITMENT PROCESS (APPLICATION, INTERVIEW MEETING, PROCESSING, OR TRAINING). THE UNITED NATIONS DOES NOT CONCERN ITSELF WITH INFORMATION ON APPLICANTS’ BANK ACCOUNTS.

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