Africa is abundantly blessed with a coastline of over 30,000 Kilometers, adjacent to vast expanse of oceans and seas. Maritime zones under Africa’s jurisdiction total about 13 million square kilometers including territorial seas and approximately 6.5 million square kilometers of the continental shelf. The continent is also endowed with huge networks of rivers, lakes, floodplains, water catchments, waterways, and wetlands with massive potential for socio-economic advancement and prosperity of the continent.
These natural aquatic endowments represent significant natural capital and opportunities for social and economic development much of which remains unexploited, untapped and underutilized. Some of these opportunities include fisheries, aquaculture, transport, energy and minerals, tourism, rural economic development and increased ecosystems and environmental sustainability. Thirty nine of the fifty five African Union Member States are adjacent to the coastline.
In a bid to fully harness these aquatic endowments for the benefits of the continent, the African Union developed the Africa Blue Economy Strategy. The Strategy is designed to guide and support the AU Member States and regional institutions to effectively address the critical challenges to blue economy. Accordingly, the Strategy lays out the priority actions for initiating actions to harness economic potential opportunities and to maximize benefits and returns for a more evolved, inclusive, efficient and effective blue economy in Africa. Noting that the blue economy has diverse components, the Blue Economy Strategy focuses on the following five thematic essential sectors, considered as crucial to blue economy growth in Africa:
- Fisheries, aquaculture, conservation and sustainable aquatic ecosystems
- Shipping/transportation, trade, ports, maritime security, safety and enforcement
- Coastal and maritime tourism, climate change, resilience, environment, infrastructure
- Sustainable energy and mineral resources and innovative industries
- Policies, institutional and governance, employment, job creation and poverty eradication, innovative financing
Blue economy accounting calls for a smarter and more comprehensive approach to monitoring blue economy resources, including oceans, seas, freshwater ecosystems. However the full potential of aquatic and marine ecosystems and associated resources is yet to be fully appreciated on the African continent. The inadequate and weak knowledge of blue resources and their contribution to socio-economic indicators remain major knowledge gaps and barriers to the sustainable harnessing resources of Blue Economy, policy articulation, formulation, development and implementation. This data-driven initiative will help African leaders, policy and decision-makers to manage the continental aquatic ecosystems in a more collaborative, effective, efficient, and coordinated and a holistic manner.
To reinforce the marine knowledge, blue accounting will provide to the citizen and the society valuable information based on accounting principles and standards that identify, measure, value, and report with new opportunities for marine and maritime sustainability.
The capacity for adequate accounting of blue economic and blue economy ecosystems is necessary to monitor on a regular basis, the performance of both the economics and the environmental services. There is need to enhance knowledge on issues involved for accounting of Blue Economy activities and components. The approach and relevant data will be collected from various sources in order to provide an overall picture of the contribution of Blue Economy to the supply chain of value addition and job creation. The concept of blue economy in the Africa Blue Economy Strategy would allow a proper setting up of a national accounting to centrally monitor and record annual changes of Blue Economy sectors and ecological components. The Blue Economy knowledge and awareness enhanced would ensure that Blue Economy natural resources are well accounted for through capacity strengthening on the evaluation of Blue Economy natural capital accounting.
The information note to be developed in this assignment is to provide an understanding on the application of the concept of blue accounting as essential to support the Africa Blue Economy strategy. Therefore, through support of Kingdom of Norway, the African Union Inter-African Bureau for Animal Resources (AU-IBAR) is seeking a suitable consultant to develop a concise Information Note on blue accounting in the context of Africa Blue Economy Strategy.
Objectives of the Information Note and the Assignment
Within the context of Africa Blue Economy Strategy, the overall objective is to develop an Information Note on Blue Accounting to provide an understanding and the application of the concept as essential tool to support implementation of Africa Blue Economy Strategy by decision-makers and policymakers in AU Member States and regional economic communities.
The specific objectives of the Information Note include the following:
- Provide conceptual understanding of blue accounting;
- Show the nexus between blue accounting and marine ecosystems sustainability;
- Indicate relevant information and data requirements for socio-economic assessment of blue resources, including goods and services they generate;
- Highlight, in generic terms, on data gaps and information as baseline for comprehensive Blue Economy socio-economic assessment; and,
- Outline lesson and best practices in selected case studies on blue accounting systems and outline key policy messages.
Methodology of conducting the assignment
During the consultancy, the Consultant is expected to:
- Gain access to, and be thoroughly conversant with the Africa Blue Economy Strategy
- Identify and review other related AU and global instruments and best practices on blue economy and blue accounting);
- Consult electronically and/or virtually with relevant staff at AU-IBAR, AUDA-NEPAD, and DARBE.
The assignment will be executed primarily from home with electronic interaction with stakeholders.
The consultancy will be expected to submit to the Director, AU-IBAR:
- The consultancy will be expected to submit to the Director, AU-IBAR the following:
- A draft inception report within five (5) calendar days of signing the contract. The inception report should demonstrate a clear understanding of the assignment by the consultant. The report should also include a detailed work plan, timelines and deliverables of the assignment;
- First draft on Information Note on Blue Accounting within 10 man-days;
- Final draft of the Information Note that will incorporate comments and suggestions made by the relevant staff; and,
- A comprehensive report on the consultancy with lessons and best practices.
The consultant selected for the assignment should possess advanced degree in blue economy related discipline: i.e. natural resources economics; ocean economy; or climate change and environment. PhD degree in related discipline would be an added advantage.
The successful consultant is expected to have the following experiences:
- Record of formulation of relevant policies, strategies and frameworks for AU Member States, regional and continental institutions to support sustainable blue economy resources, governance and development
- Evidence of conducting research and producing high quality scientific papers on African aquatic ecosystems
- Familiarization of issues of climate change, environment and the nexus with ocean economy in the context of African blue economy development
- Evidence of familiarization of issues and promoting integrated management of large marine ecosystems and inland water bodies
- Record of familiarizations with socio-economic valuation of goods and services in African aquatic ecosystems
- Evidence of publications on knowledge-products (e.g. policy briefs, guidelines, advocacy papers, articles) on key vectors of Africa blue economy sector.
- Record of formulation of monitoring and evaluation framework for blue economy implementation
- Record of promoting blue financing mechanisms in African blue economy sector
Other essential attributes
- Record of good writing skills and scientific publications in relevant fields of blue economy.
- Record of delivery of assignment within tight schedules.
- Proficiency in at least two AU official languages.
Evaluation criteria and scores
General experience 20
Specific experience 40
Methodology and approach 10
Other skills (writing skills, computing skills, publications) 10
Proficiency in AU Language 5
Duration of assignment
20 man-days effective but conducted within 40 calendar days.
USD 6000 (Six Thousand USD Dollars). No other costs will be paid for.
Payment schedule for individual consultant:
- 30 % payment for first approved draft of the Information Note on blue accounting
- 70 % payment of the final approved Information Note blue accounting
The consultancy will be awarded on the basis of evaluation of CV, and of the following proposal submitted by the consultant to AU-IBAR:
- Detailed CV of consultant
- A Technical proposal on how the applicant will do the assignment: detailed description of the proposed Approach and methodology including qualifications, experiences
Supervision and approval of report
Under the supervision of the AU-IBAR Fisheries Management Expert with oversight supervision by the Director of AU-IBAR.
The consultant will use own laptops and other data capturing equipment deemed necessary during execution of the assignment.
The consultant will be responsible for own medical and life insurance cover for the duration of the assignment.
How to apply
Interested candidates should submit their applications accompanied by a detailed CV, copies of both academic and professional certificates and testimonials, names and addresses of three reputable referees, contact details (e-mail, telephone) by email to: email@example.com with copies to firstname.lastname@example.org, by 10 October 2021 15:00 Kenyan Time.
Personal Data Protection and Privacy
A Personal Data Protection and Privacy Statement is also attached as information for the applicants.