A key driver of progress towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is increased financing for the SDGs. Efforts to identify global opportunities, challenges, and ways to advance the convergence of digital technology, the financial ecosystem, and the SDGs, led to the UN Secretary General’s launch of the Task Force on Digital Financing of the Sustainable Development Goals in November 2018.
In the Philippines, despite recent strong economic performance, with GDP growth averaging more than 6% over the past decade, inequality has been increasing. In an effort to reduce poverty rates, the government has significantly expanded the range, coverage of, and financing for different types of poverty-focused interventions, including a large conditional cash transfer program, time-limited unconditional cash transfers, social pensions, post-disaster/crisis emergency payments, and targeted programs for the elderly, poor and people with disabilities.
Digital cash platforms can provide a strong basis for enabling effective, safe, timely and convenient ways to distribute the various types of government payments and benefits to millions of beneficiaries across a widely dispersed land area and promote greater financial inclusion poses a significant challenge. To examine and analyze pathways for how digital platforms could help sustain and accelerate poverty eradication efforts, a Scoping Mission, jointly undertaken by UNDP Bangkok Regional Hub (BRH) and UNDP Philippines Country Office (CO), was carried out in August 2019.
Given strong CO partnerships across a range of stakeholders that either provide or receive cash-based financial transactions and the focus of the country programme on poverty reduction, the scoping mission assessed three potential high-impact use cases: (i) using digital cash assistance to strengthen the humanitarian- development nexus; (ii) securing payments for cash transfer beneficiaries of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD); and (iii) building a digital financial ecosystem in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM).
For each of the use cases the mission found a strong basis for further pursuing the development of partnerships with key agencies and exploring the prospect for developing UNDP-support projects. For strengthening the humanitarian- development nexus the mission recommended further developing a partnership with the World Food Programme (WFP) to explore using WFP’s beneficiary identification and registration process to enable compliance with the know-your-customer requirements for opening digital cash accounts, in partnership with international NGOs and private sector digital cash providers. For DSWD’s cash transfer program, the mission recommended holding further discussions with Banko Sentral ng Pilipinas and Land Bank of the Philippines to explore options for experimenting with digital cash payments. For the financial ecosystem in BARMM, the mission recommended an approach to integrate the existing or planned project interventions on free public wi-fi, digitalizing local service delivery, and information and communications technology infrastructure for the region. These three proposed high-impact cases would be brought together to constitute the CO’s Digital Finance Program.
To rapidly advance the development of UNDP support for these three initiatives, UNDP seeks the services of a senior technical advisor for financial inclusion.
The IC will report directly to the Senior Policy Advisor, and in his stead, the Accelerator Lab-Philippines (ALab-PH) Head of Experimentation, with whom all outputs and shall be submitted and through whom all communications shall be coursed and who shall accept the consultant’s outputs. S/he will work in close coordination with the Impact and Advisory Team (IAT) and ALab-PH. Outputs shall be reviewed by the IAT Senior Policy Advisor and ALab-PH Head of Experimentation and approved by the UNDP Philippines Resident Representative.
Outputs will be jointly reviewed and approved by the Residentby the IAT Senior Policy Advisor and ALab-PH Head of Experimentation. The deliverable will be approved by the UNDP Resident Representative.
The IC is expected to provide his/her own laptop for the work requirement. S/he will be provided with desk space and access to office facilities and equipment. S/he will also be supported by UNDP staff for administrative and logistic requirements.
Local travels, when required, will be approved, covered, and arranged by the Country Office following UNDP Financial Rules and Regulations. International travels are not expected.
Duration of Work and Duty Station
The expected duration of the assignment is 60 working days between 07 February to 31 May 2020, unless revised in a mutually agreed upon timetable between the Consultant, IAT Senior Policy Advisor, and ALab PH Head of Experimentation.
Duty station is in the UNDP Philippines Country Office in Mandaluyong, Metro Manila, with possible travel to UNDP Field Office in Cotabato City. All travels to Cotabato City, when required, will be arranged and covered by UNDP Philippines. The Consultant is not required to report daily but is expected to be readily available in person for meetings in the duty station and other relevant locations with the team and relevant stakeholders, as necessary.
Scope of Price Proposal and Schedule of Payments
The Consultant should send the financial proposal based on a lump-sum amount for the delivery of the outputs identified below. The total amount quoted shall be “all inclusive” all costs (professional fees, travel costs, living allowances, communications, consumables, etc.) that could possibly be incurred by the Consultant are already factored into the final amounts submitted in the proposal.
The contract price will be fixed output-based price. Any deviations from the output and timelines will be agreed upon between the Consultant, IAT Senior Policy Advisor, and ALab-PH Head of Experimentation.
Payments will be done upon satisfactory completion of the deliverables by target due dates. Outputs will be certified by the UNDP Philippines Resident Representative through his designated representative prior to release of payments.
35% Upon submission and approval of the Final draft of the project document
20% Upon submission and approval of the Comments on Islamic finance paper
03 April 2020
25% Upon submission and approval of the Draft Concept note on CCT model
24 April 2020
20% Upon submission and approval of the Final draft of Concept note on CCT model
15 May 2020