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Guide for U.S. Consultants


Who is responsible for the selection of Consultants?

The borrowing country is responsible for the selection of consultants, which is usually handled through the appropriate ministry or office (executing agency) on behalf of the government. This includes preparation of bid documents, prequalification of consulting firms, short listing, bid evaluation, contract negotiation and award, contract supervision and payment.

Consultant services can be procured using a consulting firm or an individual if it is a small assignment. All of the Bank's procedures related to consultants are detailed in a booklet entitled Rules of Procedure for the Use of Consultants.

What are the types of consultancy services procured by the Borrower?

A. Preinvestment Studies: In most cases, these studies are conducted before a decision is made to proceed with a project. Preinvestment studies include: macro-economic and sectoral studies, preparation of master plans, prefeasibility studies, preliminary engineering, environmental impact assessments, and policy analysis.

B. Detailed Design Studies: These studies concern the technical, economic, or other works required to fully define a project and prepare it for implementation. The design studies normally include: detailed capital and operating cost estimates, detailed engineering, performance specifications and tender documents required for the invitation to bid, and preparation of procurement documents.

C. Supervision and Control of Works Implementation: These services include construction supervision and project management, inspection, and implementation services, such as assistance in procurement.

D. Technical Assistance: These services include a wide range of advisory and Borrower support services, such as development and sector planning, and institution-building, including organization and management studies, staffing requirements and training studies, and assistance in implementing study recommendations.

Where can I obtain information on opportunities for Consultants?

A. Projects in the Pipeline This is a list of all upcoming projects to be considered by the AfDB's Board of Director's for approval. In most cases, consulting services are required for these projects before and after the Bank's approval.

B. The Quarterly Operational Summary: This publication is a status report on projects under preparation or recently approved by the Bank.

C. Press Releases When the Bank approves a project, a press release giving brief details is published.

D. General Procurement Notice: Shortly after a project is approved by the Bank, a notice describing the nature of consultancy services sought and indicating the process to be followed for acquiring such services, as well as restriction, is published. The Borrower prepares this notice, and gives the name, address, and telephone numbers of the executing agency. The General Procurement Notice is published in the United Nations "Development Business" Journal, at least one month prior to any publication or on request for proposal for consultancy services. The General Procurement Notices are also published in the ADB Business Bulletin.

What is a Short List?

The Short List is made up of consultants who in the view of the Borrower and the AfDB, possess the required capabilities and experiences to supply the specific services and are otherwise eligible. Only consultants appearing on the Short List may be invited to submit proposals. The Short List is prepared by the Borrower and submitted to the Bank for review and approval.

How does the Borrower determine a Short List?

  • The Borrower's own experience of consulting firms and individual consultants
  • The list of consultants who expressed interest in providing the proposed services
  • AfDB's register of consultants DACON System

What are the principal criteria for selection of consultants?

1. Technical Quality: Selection takes into account the firm's competence to perform the service. This criterion is used for more complex and riskier projects.

2. Technical Quality and Price Consideration: This is used for services of varying complexity.

3. Comparability and Price: This criteria makes the selection based on price after comparing all of the technical proposals. This is used for assignments of a simple technical nature.

What are the steps I need to take to be successful?

1. Register as a consultant at the AfDB under the DACON System

2. Consult the "Projects in the Pipeline", The Quarterly Operational Summary, and general & specific procurement notices (link) for consultancy opportunities.

3. If the project interests you, submit a letter of interest to the Executing Agency. Companies who have expressed interest have a good chance of being considered as candidates for the Short List.

Does the AfDB procure consulting services?

In some cases, the AfDB engages consulting firms for complex assignments and/or for ongoing services, such as auditing. In addition, consultants are used to conduct studies published by the AfDB, such as the recent studies on gender and the environment. Frequently, the Bank will tap into bilateral trust funds when procuring consultants.

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