Short-term Policy Consultancy – Aceli Africa

About this job

Location Kenya or Rwanda
Posted 10/20/2021
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Company Description

Aceli Africa is a market incentive facility to mobilize over $600M in private sector lending for agricultural SMEs in Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania, and Uganda by 2025. To achieve this goal, Aceli Africa expects to provide $40M in financial incentives over the next five years to increase the risk appetite of 20+ global and local financial institutions to make loans ranging from USD $25K-$1.5M to inclusive agricultural SMEs. Financial incentives have been designed based on an original dataset that Aceli Africa gathered and analyzed in collaboration with Dalberg Advisors. Aceli will also facilitate technical assistance to expand the ability of high-potential SMEs to qualify for and manage financing as well as capacity building for lenders to serve this market. Over the next five years, Aceli aims to catalyze a more competitive lending market for agri-SMEs and demonstrate a model that can be scaled up in East Africa and beyond.

Aceli is set up as a demonstration model to establish an evidence base for “smart subsidy” approaches for inclusive agricultural finance. The end goal is to influence national governments to create a more favorable environment for agricultural SME finance, including (i) budget allocations that replace donor funding and promote inclusive agricultural growth; and (ii) central bank regulations aligned with financial incentives to promote agricultural lending. As such, Aceli plans to work with and through partners to promote government policies that strengthen the enabling environment for agricultural SME finance.

Aceli’s policy objective: engage policymakers and other ecosystem actors to influence policy changes that strengthen the enabling environment for agricultural SME finance

Job Description

Aceli is currently developing its policy strategy and is looking for consultants to support the development of, and potentially the execution of this strategy. The consultant(s) will work closely with the Aceli team on a country and program level on three key areas:

[1] Policy mapping and analysis:

  • Determine relevant policies/regulations to be reviewed through this analysis (see Annex).
  • Undertake country-level analysis to identify intervention pathways for Aceli to advance its policy strategy, including direct engagement with policymakers and/or partnerships with other organizations
  • Identify other constraints in the policy enabling environment and determining if / how Aceli can contribute, in collaboration with partners
  • Review existing evidence of successful interventions that have resulted in policy change at a national level
  • Review and provide inputs into ongoing analysis being led by Aceli to understand how Central Bank policies (e.g., Statutory Minimum Requirements, Capital Adequacy Ratios, Provisioning Requirements etc) are either enabling or limiting lending to agricultural SMEs.

[2] Stakeholder engagement:

  • Develop robust stakeholder maps for key policy actors at a country level, as well as regionally and globally. Aceli has already identified and is engaging with an initial set of stakeholders across its four markets – the consultant(s) will build off this work.
  • In collaboration with the Aceli team, conduct interviews with key policy influencers and decision-makers across Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania, and Uganda
  • Provide support to Aceli, Aceli donors, and other pertinent stakeholders in the process of lobbying for change

[3] Strategy development:

  • Review and revise Aceli’s hypotheses informing the program’s theory of change as pertains to policy
  • Identify the most pertinent and feasible policy reform objectives that Aceli is best placed to influence
  • Prepare a technical guide / guidance material to inform Aceli’s approach to policy Deliverables
  • Updated country-level results chain and policy strategy for Aceli Africa;
  • Country-level stakeholder maps of key, prioritized policy stakeholders for Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania, and Uganda;
  • A technical guide with prioritized pathways for Aceli’s implementation activities related to policy;
  • Input to Aceli’s white paper on Central Bank policies that enable or limit lending to agriculture SMEs
  • Any other outputs from the engagement, including but not limited to interview guides, interview notes etc.


  • Strong understanding and relevant experience in agriculture finance, policy, and/or agriculture within an international development context
  • Good knowledge of political economy methodologies and tools
  • Experience working with governments to design and/or implement policies
  • Knowledgeable and well-connected with national-level policy from the relevant government ministries (finance, central bank, agriculture, trade) in the four focus countries as well as international actors such as World Bank, IFAD, and FAO
  • An advanced degree in a relevant field such as economics, sociology, rural development international development, public policy etc.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills

Additional Information

Please submit your CV and cover note here detailing your interest and qualification in this role no later than November 15, 2021. Only short-listed candidates will be contacted.

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