Consultancy_Analysing the investment requirements to boost trade and decent employment in the engineering products and services sector in Jordan At International Labour Organization


  1. Introduction

The International Labour Organization (ILO) is the tripartite UN agency that brings together the government, employers, and workers of its member states in common action to promote decent work throughout the world. Further information on the Organization may be found at www.ilo.org.

The Consultant will provide services in the context of the “Mainstreaming Employment into Trade and Investment” (METI) programme, which is funded by the European Union (EU) and implemented by the ILO. The overall objective of the programme is to enable policymakers in the Southern Mediterranean to incorporate employment issues into trade and investment policies, and design and implement interventions that ultimately optimise the quantity and quality of employment created in the region. This will support the design and implementation of investment strategies that optimize the quantity and quality of employment creation in the region. This current consultancy will focus on the investment policy side of the METI project.

In the context of the METI programme, an export-oriented value chain analysis (VCA) of the engineering products and services sector has been conducted in Jordan. This value chain analysis identified bottlenecks and opportunities for expanding markets and exports to create more and better jobs, in particular for women and youth, and within small- and medium-sized enterprises in the analysed sector. The findings informed the support needed from governments, which include labour, trade and investment agencies, workers’ and employers’ organisations, and social partners to enhance the sector’s competitiveness and exports, and to equip workers with the required skill sets.

Based on the findings of this VCA, the current assignment will analyse the investment requirements needed to develop further exports and boost productive and decent employment in the analysed sector. In this context, the consultant shall provide a comprehensive analysis of the role of foreign and domestic investment (public and private) in developing the engineering products and services sector in Jordan, by linking domestic firms, particularly SMEs, to international activities as well as the environment supporting or preventing the development of these linkages.

  1. Scope of the consultancy

In the framework of the METI project, which analyzes the linkages between investment and trade and their effects on employment, with a focus on youth, women, and SMEs, this consultancy will specifically look at foreign direct investment (FDI) and how it supports the national development in the engineering products and services sector in Jordan. It is generally recognized that trade and investment, are closely interconnected. Companies often combine both trade and investment to increase the productive capacities of supply chains, access new markets, and provide better-quality goods and services. As such this assignment wants to analyze how FDI and domestic investment are inter-linked and how FDI could support the development of local firms and how these actual investments in selected export sectors impact employment and vice versa.

Additionally, the assignment will shed light on the investment requirements (capital, infrastructure, but also skills requirements, etc.), for developing the analysed sector to meet the export potential[1] and spur decent employment.

The consultant shall conduct thorough research, including consultations with government, employers’ and workers’ organizations and other social partners (e.g., exporters association), to address the below topics:

A. The investment climate and the macroeconomic climate of the sector in the country

Objective: Evaluate the current investment regulation framework and related international agreements to identify hurdles and opportunities for promoting productive investments, increasing exports, and creating decent employment.

Key Areas to Address:

  1. National investment and labour market regulations[2]: Assess the existing national rules and policies governing investments and employment, with a focus on the analysed sector.
  2. Trade and investment agreements: Examine how bilateral, regional, and multilateral agreements affect employment, investment and trade in the analysed sector.
  3. Institutional mechanisms for implementing agreements: Describe the processes in which investors report commitments contained in the investment agreement, especially local sourcing commitments; how does the government monitor these commitments; identify opportunities for government action (and potential incentives and direct interventions) to enable productive employment and linkages with local firms.
  4. Policy coherence: Investigate the alignment between trade, investment, and employment policies.
  5. Macroeconomic Indicators: Analyze key indicators like GDP, productivity, inflation, producer price index, consumer price index, employment cost index, etc. that have a direct or indirect impact on the investment climate, investment strategies and decisions.

This part of the assignment will build on and be closely related to existing research conducted under METI’s value chain analysis of the engineering products and services in Jordan.

The consultant will be provided with findings from the VCA on:

  • stakeholders’ value chain mapping including the supporting functions, rules and regulations;
  • short assessment of the global, regional, and national market;
  • structure of the value chain: assessment of the current local value chain of the selected sector and the challenges that firms face;
  • Assessment of employment levels for each step of the value chains, level of existing and needed skills, and conditions of work.

B. Investment needs for the development of the sector and for the promotion of inclusivity of SMEs into the international activities

Objective: Identify necessary investments in the below key areas to meet the export potential of the assessed sector, increase its production capacities and value addition potential, and thus spur decent employment opportunities. Identify the various stakeholders responsible for funding the areas listed below and determine where government subsidies may be necessary.

  1. Labor Force: Training and development needs.
  2. Sustainability: Initiatives to enhance sustainable practices.
  3. Environment: Environmental protection measures.
  4. Logistics and Transport: Improvements in transportation and logistics.
  5. Energy and Water Infrastructure: Enhancements in energy and water supply.
  6. Communication and Digitalization: Upgrades in communication and digital technologies.
  7. Technology/Equipment: Investment in modern machinery and tools.
  8. SME capacity building and linkages including access to finance: Solutions for enhancing industrial linkages including technical and financial support and overcoming investment gaps, especially for SMEs.

C. Analysis of FDI impact on technology, innovation and inclusive development of the sub-sector at the national level?

Objective: Assess how foreign direct investments (FDI) are driving technology, innovation, and inclusive development in the sector at the national level.

Key Areas to Address:

  1. Linkages and Motivations: Explain the connections between FDI and national companies and describe why international firms engage locally and in what forms (e.g., greenfield vs. brownfield investments, alliances, joint ventures, long-term contracts).
  2. Technology Spillover and Innovation: Analyse whether, and to what extent and how (through which channels), FDI leads to technology spillover (and to national innovation) to the national companies within the value chain of the sector analysed. Do national SMEs have sufficient absorptive capacities? Are they embedded in a supportive environment (financial support, R&D entities, TVET institutions, national innovation policies, rules & regulations, market information, investment promotion, etc.) which promotes this absorption?
  3. Opportunities and Barriers for SMEs: Identify opportunities and barriers for SMEs to productively link with large firms.
  4. Training and R&D Activities: Investigate if multinationals and international companies provide training or conduct R&D in the host country. Examine if they collaborate with local research institutes and help national companies meet international standards and certification.
  5. Skills Development and Social Inclusion: Analyze if international companies through technology spillover triggering a boost in skills development of (which type of) workers in this sector working for them (throughout the supply chain and the whole sector), whether FDI contributes or not to promote social inclusion by promoting the transition to formality (of individual workers and enterprises). If the contribution is limited, what are the major bottlenecks and how to overcome them?

D. FDI and domestic investment in the value chain, its contribution to more and better jobs

Objective: Analyze the impact of foreign and domestic investments on job creation (quantity and quality) to identify whether investments lead to better and more formal jobs, higher productivity, and wages, or whether they result in precarious employment or a trap into low skill jobs specialization. What is the role of FDI and what of national companies? What is the share of informal jobs/informal economic units in this value chain?

Key Areas to Address:

  • Job Creation: Number of jobs created throughout the value chain.
  • Job Quality: Formal vs. informal jobs and alignment with ILO’s Decent Work standards (respect of labour norms, working conditions, social protection, OSH, etc.).
  • Worker Diversity: Impact on different worker groups (skill level, gender, age).

E. Recommendations

How could investment policies and related trade/industrial/fiscal/SME and employment policies be better designed to incentivise private actors, and foreign and local firms of different sizes to include further employment considerations in their decision-making process and to enhance local private sector linkages to enhance the positive local multipliers throughout the value chain, towards the creation of quality jobs for the analysed sector?

3. Implementation arrangements

The consultant should frequently consult with national stakeholders (i.e. Policy Working Group members) to ensure an alignment with national priorities in general and with the METI VCA implementation plan[3] in engineering products and services sector in Jordan. The consultant will work in close cooperation with the METI technical team working in the VCA of this specific subsector.

The methodology for this assignment shall follow a thorough desk-review of existing literature, data analysis, and it should be enhanced by personal interviews with key stakeholders whenever needed. It should benefit from another ILO consultancy on data collection through surveys for the VCA analysis of the METI project.

The consultant should report directly to the ILO Project Officer, Ms Joyanna Pelivani.

The findings of the research will be commented on by the METI team and peer-reviewed by two assigned peer-reviewers.

4. Deliverables

Based on the above, the consultant is required to submit the following deliverables:

First deliverable

A comprehensive literature review, a methodology for conducting the study and a detailed workplan.

Second deliverable

A draft report, including an abstract (250 words), an executive summary (2 pages), a comprehensive analysis of the findings (10-15 pages), and recommendations for attracting and directing productive investments to create decent employment in the respective sector (5 pages).

The consultant shall submit together with the draft report a ppt presentation with the main findings and an Excel file with the raw data including all tables, graphs and files presented in the report.

Third deliverable

A final Report incorporating all comments received by the ILO.

The Consultant shall submit together with the final report, which should not be over 30 pages, the final ppt presentation incorporating all comments received by ILO and the final excel including the raw data and all final tables, graphs and files presented in the report.

5. Timeline

The consultancy shall be concluded within 30 working days. The author is responsible for ensuring that all references are accurate and complete and well referenced. The author shall adhere to the ILO House Style Manual (Sixth edition), in particular regarding formatting, spelling and referencing. The House Style Manual as well as an official ILO template will be provided to the consultant.

6. Payment Schedule

Deliverables

Deliverable 1: Literature review, methodology, detailed workplan;

Literature review: 25 pages in total, incl. graphs, tables, and bibliography. Methodology: 3 pages. Workplan: 2 pages (25% payment share)

Deliverable 2: Draft report; 30 pages in total, including graphs, tables (45% payment share)

Deliverable 3: Final Report, 30 pages in total, including graphs, tables (15% payment share)

Deliverable 4: Summary brief , 4 pages in total, including graphs, tables (15% payment share)

7. Required Qualifications

Education:

Minimum bachelor’s degree or equivalent in a relevant discipline, e.g., economics, business administration, statistics, engineering, political and social sciences. A master’s degree is an advantage.

Languages:

Excellent command (writing and speaking skills) of English and Arabic.

Experience:

  • Thorough academic background in international economics with a focus on the nexus of investments, trade and employment.
  • Working experience in labour economics and/or labour market issues and familiarity with ILO’s Decent Work Agenda
  • Familiarity with engineering sector in Jordan, including knowledge about main actors in this sector, in particular international and national companies, will be considered a strong advantage.
  • Thorough knowledge of the functioning of the analysed sector at the national and related international level
  • Broad experience in collecting and analyzing data on labour, trade and investment.

Sound knowledge of the country’s investment trends, trade patterns and labour market conditions.

[1] The findings of the export potential of the engineering products and services sector analysis conducted by the METI project will be provided to the selected Consultant.

[2] To advise the national sources and the ILO NATLEX data set and the UNCTAD Investment Hub

[3] The METI VCA implementation plan will be shared with the selected consultant.

How to apply

8. Expression of interest

This call is open only to individual consultants and not to firms. Individual applicants are allowed to apply together with others, but they shall clarify in their proposal who is the main responsible for the outcome and the focal point in contact with the ILO.

Consultants who would be interested and available to conduct this assignment should send an expression of interest by e-mail to pelivani@ilo.org by 27th June with the following:

  • A detailed CV, highlighting relevant experience and publications on this topic.
  • A short proposal (2-3 pages) on how to conduct the study (i.e., methodology, data sources, time plan)
  • A recent publication on this topic (applicant shall be the lead author)

Clarifying questions about the ToRs can be sent to pelivani@ilo.org

The ILO values diversity. We welcome applications from qualified women and men, including those with disabilities.

The ILO will not consider incomplete submissions or applications received after the indicated deadline. All responses and supporting documentation received will be treated as strictly confidential and will not be made available to the public.

These ToRs do not constitute a solicitation. The ILO reserves the right to change or cancel this bidding process or any of its requirements at any time during the process; any such action by the ILO will either be posted publicly or directly communicated to all participants, as appropriate. Invitations to participate in tenders and any subsequent contract will be issued in accordance with the rules and procedures of the ILO.

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