I. Project description
1. Type of contract
The contract notice is intended solely to select, on the basis of a general tender, parties entitled to subsequently provide specific services related to the single lot mentioned hereafter (Paragraph 3). At the end of the evaluation procedure, framework contracts will be concluded with the successful tenderer(s) selected for the lot. The framework contracts have a value of Euro 0. Only subsequent contracts concluded for the provision of specific services have a contractual value.
2. Contract description
The Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA) is a joint international institution of the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Group of States and the European Union (EU). Its mission is to advance food security, resilience and inclusive economic growth in Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific through innovations in sustainable agriculture. It provides access to information and knowledge, facilitates policy dialogue and strengthens the capacity of agricultural and rural development institutions and communities.
CTA’s main funding comes from the European Development Fund in the context of the ACP-EU Cotonou Partnership Agreement (CPA). The CPA will expire in February 2020 and the ACP and EU are negotiating a successor agreement that will be significantly different from the current agreement. As a result, CTA will be expected to attract funding from different sources through a well-articulated strategy and offerings that appeal to a range of stakeholders.
The Centre has undertaken a number of activities to prepare itself for the future, including a strategic plan 2016-2020, a strategy refresh 2018-2020 and a transition plan 2018-2020.
In its Strategy Refresh, CTA has defined three key intervention areas to guide its work -- youth entrepreneurship and employment; digitalisation for agricultural productivity and profitability; and climate smart agriculture practices and policies. Gender and women empowerment cut across the three strategic intervention areas.
CTA supports youth entrepreneurship and employment through a number of interventions, including the AgriHack programme, which identifies and supports ICT4Ag start-ups; providing skills building and business development support across various value chains.
In digitalisation for agriculture, CTA is a recognised leader and has been at the forefront of introducing and adapting digital innovations to benefit smallholder farmers, youth entrepreneurs and others involved in the agricultural value chain in ACP counties. CTA supports piloting and upscaling of specific digital technologies such as drones, satellites and open data, to advance ‘smart farming’ for smallholders.
In its third intervention area—promoting climate smart agriculture (CSA) technologies and practices—CTA is supporting innovations such as index insurance, drought tolerant seeds and mobile-based advisory services for smallholder producers. CTA is also providing policy support to up-scale CSA through the review of Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) of ACP countries.
In its women empowerment work, which is a cross-cutting theme, CTA has launched an important initiative to promote women-led agribusinesses through capacity building, networking and facilitating business linkages.
CTA is issuing this notice to identify experts in the areas of strategy and business development as detailed in section 3 below.
3. Number of lots and services to be provided
Number of lots: One
The services required by the CTA are as follows:
Service areas in the lot
- Capacity/Capability assessment of CTA in terms of its expertise, networks, projects and partnerships
- Undertake market analysis for the products and services that CTA offers and map out the competitors’ and donor landscape for these kinds of products and services; develop detailed business canvas
- Analysis of organisational options, including mapping out staffing plans, new skills, legal framework, etc.
- Detailed planning for implementation of organisational re-design, including timeframe for transition from current to new state, stakeholder engagement plans, etc.
- Provide a roadmap on change management for CTA to enhance the acceptance and adoption of the new business plan
Note: Following the award of framework contracts (with a value of €0), mini-competitions will be organised for specific contracts in relation to the service areas listed above.
Total maximum number of days for the entire lot – seventy (70) days.
3. Maximum budget
- Maximum budget available for the framework contract: not applicable
- Maximum indicative number of days available for the lot and the entire duration of the framework contracts: see above (point 3)
II. Participation conditions
Participation in the invitation to tender is open equally to natural or legal persons of the ACP States, EU Member States, official EU candidate countries, member States of the European Economic Area, OECD/DAC members in case of activities implemented in LDCs and HIPCSs and to international organisations, participating individually or through a grouping – consortium – of candidates.
6. Number of tenders
Tenderers may submit only one tender as team leader, member of a consortium or sub-contractor.
7. Exclusion situations
A natural or legal person in a situation of ineligibility may not participate in the tender (cf. point 11 § B below).
Participation by an ineligible entity shall entail the automatic elimination of the tender submitted.
8. Subcontracting possibilities
- Subcontracting is authorised.
- If a tenderer intends to subcontract one or more parts of the services, he/she/it must indicate clearly in his/her/its tender the name(s) of the subcontractor(s) as well as the nature of services subcontracted.
- Subcontractors must meet the conditions of eligibility.
- A subcontractor may not subcontract in turn.
III. Provisional calendar
9. Indicative start date of the contract
The framework contract will be concluded no later than 28 February 2019. The framework contractors may be invited within one month of this date to submit a tender for specific services, and atlater dates depending on CTA’s needs.
10. Duration and implementation of the contract
A framework contract will be concluded with the successful tenderers for a maximum period of 12 months.
Note: CTA may use a negotiated procedure to extend services already underway, if CTA considers it necessary. There are two scenarios:
- Complementary services not included in the main contract but which, due to unforeseen circumstances, have become necessary to perform the contract, provided that the aggregate amount of additional services does not exceed 50% of the value of the principal contract;
- Additional services consisting of the repetition of similar services entrusted to the contractor, providing these services (i) are justified by special circumstances, and (ii) do not exceed the value and duration of the initial contract.
IV. Submission of tenders
11. Content of tenders
The applicable language for the call for tenders and all the documents is French or English. The tenderer must include the following documents:
- A. For legal persons: A document issued by a recognised and competent authority according to national law and customs, certifying that the tenderer is duly registered in an eligible country (cf. § 4 above). For natural persons: Documents or copies of documents certifying that the tenderer is a citizen of one of the eligible countries (cf. § 5 above) and that he / she is a permanent resident of that country; for international organisations, a document constituting evidence of their status.
- B. A sworn statement signed and dated at least 90 days as of the date of submission, to be prepared on company letterhead, certifying that he/she/it is NOT in one of the following exclusion situations:
- Is in a state of bankruptcy, liquidation, judicial settlement, discontinuance of activity, or in any suchlike situation resulting from proceedings of the same nature in the national legislation and regulations
- Is the subject of bankruptcy, liquidation or judicial settlement proceedings, or any other proceedings of the same nature in the national legislation or regulations
- Has been sentenced by judgement having the force of res judicata (i.e. against which there is no further appeal) for any offence that compromises his professional conduct
- Has been guilty of gross professional negligence
- Has failed to fulfil his obligations concerning the payment of social security contributions in accordance with the relevant legal provisions of the country in which the he/she/it is established
- Has failed to meet his obligations concerning the payment of taxes and charges in accordance with the relevant legal provisions of the country in which the he/she/it is established
- Is or has been guilty of making false statements when providing the information required by CTA for his participation in a contract
- Has been found to have seriously failed to meet his contractual obligations arising out of another contract concluded with CTA.
- C. For legal persons: A one-page declaration attesting to annual turnover figures for the last three (3) years. For natural persons: A sworn statement certifying that the tenderer is in good financial health.
In the case of a consortium, each member of the consortium must provide documents A, B and C. In the case of subcontracting, the subcontractor(s) must provide document A. It is to be noted that the rule of nationality does not apply to either the tenderers’ employees or the individual experts proposed by the tenderer.
- D. A description of the areas of expertise (1 page).
- E. A list of succinct references for the last three years describing the assignments or projects carried out in relation to the service areas included in the lot (1 to 2 pages).
- F. A list of technical staff (permanent employees, other employees) for the last three years and a summary of their professional competences (2 pages).
- G. If applicable, a description of the resources, means and tools to be made available in connection with the lot (1 page).
In the case of a consortium, the tender documents must demonstrate the technical and professional competences of each consortium member. The same applies to sub-contracting agreements and sub-contractors.
- H. A financial offer in Euro indicating the unit price range for fees per day (minimum to maximum, taking into account e.g. the level of expertise) for which an offer is being submitted. The tenderers must take note that prices shall be fixed and not subject to revision during the entire duration of the framework contract. Reimbursables (if applicable) e.g. travel costs, hotel accommodation and per diem will be in accordance with CTA regulations and will be managed separately by CTA.
Prices must be quoted exclusive of value added tax (VAT), since CTA is exempt from VAT in accordance with article 15, paragraph 10 of directive 77/388/EEC and pursuant to the headquarters agreement concluded on 7 August 1984 between the Kingdom of the Netherlands and CTA.
Documents must be numbered in accordance with the specified numbering (A, B, C…). Any additional documents (brochure, letter, etc.) attached to the tender will not be taken into consideration.
Tenders which do not include all the documents and information requested in accordance with the contract notice may be considered as non-compliant and may not be examined.
12. Deadline for receipt of tenders and the procedure for transmitting tenders
Tenders must be sent to the attention of Ms. Christine Webster, Senior Procurement & Grants Coordinator, CTA, Agro Business Park 2, 6708 PW Wageningen, Netherlands and must arrive at the latest by 31 January 2019 @ 16h30, by registered letter with acknowledgement of receipt. Alternatively, they may be sent by express courier or delivered physically, against an acknowledgement of receipt, at the latest by 16h30 on the same date to the following address: CTA, Agro Business Park 2, 6708 PW Wageningen, Netherlands.
The cover letter must mention in the reference line: “Framework Contracts: “Developing a post-2020 Business Model for CTA”.
N.B. Tenders must not be sent by e-mail.
All costs for preparation of tenders are to be borne by the tenderers.
V. Selection of framework contractors
13. Evaluation of tenders
The evaluation of tenders will be conducted as follows:
- The tenderer’s eligibility will be checked on the basis of:
- the certificate issued by an authority of the country where the tenderer is established (Document A);
- the sworn statement signed by the tenderer confirming that he/she/it does not fall within the scope of the exclusion situations (Document B).
- The tender’s compliance with the administrative requirements will be checked, in particular:
- the date of delivery of the tender;
- the authorised language(s) for submitting the tender;
- the presence and validity of all the documents and information required from the tenderer (Documents A to I) and, if applicable, those of any consortium members and subcontractors.
- The tenderer’s financial and economic standing will be checked on the basis of:
- The declaration of annual turnover figures or annual value of services provided for the past 3 years (legal persons) or sworn statement about sound financial health (natural persons) (Document C).
- The tender’s technical and professional competences will be checked on the basis of:
- the relevance of the areas of expertise (Document D) with the service areas included in the lot;
- the relevance, number and quality of the references (Document E) with the service areas included in the lot;
- the relevance of the expertise and competences of the tenderer’s human resources (Document F) with the service areas included in the lot.
If applicable, the suitability of resources, means and tools (Document G) with the service areas included in the lot.
Financial bid (Document H) will be examined for tenderers:
- that satisfy the eligibility rules;
- whose tenders comply with the administrative requirements;
- that offer adequate financial, economic, technical and professional guarantees.
14. Production of the list of framework contractors
On the basis of the evaluation, the names of the successful tenderers will be placed on the list of framework contractors.
A maximum of four entities may be selected.
The entire evaluation procedure is confidential. The decisions of the evaluation committee are collegial and its deliberations are conducted behind closed doors. The members of the evaluation committee are bound by the obligation of secrecy. The evaluation reports and written minutes in particular, are intended mainly for internal use and their confidential aspects may not be communicated to the tenderers or to any other party.
The successful tenderers will be informed in writing.
They may be requested to provide, at CTA’s request, proof that they do not fall within the scope of any of the exclusion situations listed in their sworn statement (Document B) or proof regarding their financial, economic, technical or professional situation.
Any successful tenderer that fails to provide the requisite proof within 15 days shall be removed from the list of framework contractors.
Unsuccessful tenderers shall be informed by letter that their tenders have not been accepted.
17. Signature of the framework contract(s)
Each framework contractor must sign, date and return the contract to CTA within 30 days after receipt of the contract.
If a framework contractor fails to comply with this requirement, the said contractor’s registration on the list of framework contractors may be cancelled.
The list of framework contractors will be published on CTA’s web site (www.cta.int) within 45 days of signature of the last framework contract between CTA and the contractor(s).
18. Implementation of the framework contracts
The procedures for awarding contracts for specific services (i.e. activating framework contracts) are defined in the Section 3.7 of the CTA’s Procurement Procedures and Rules for Awarding Contracts available at http://cta.int/en/article/2014-02-24/procurement-and-contract-awarding-procedures.html.
Tenderers are invited to read them carefully.
If a call for tenders, for which a contract notice has been published, is cancelled, a notice of cancellation will be published on the CTA site. CTA shall in no event be liable for any compensatory damages of any nature whatsoever, including, but not limited to damages for loss of earnings, and irrespective of their connection with the cancelation of a tender procedure.
Moreover, the launch of a tender procedure shall in no event be considered as representing a binding obligation for CTA to implement the proposed programme or project and to award a contract for the services.