As for March 2016 – June 2016, development aid donors have allocated over US $400 million worth of solicited tenders and grant opportunities for the design and implementation of both large-scale, regional programs, as well as local, grassroots oriented projects. To implement these funded programs 381 tenders and Grant opportunities were solicited, from a wide range of development aid providers and international Donor Agencies, of which 82 (20%) were development grants, for NGOs to bid for, and 299 (80%) business opportunities were Tenders to procure services, supplies and works from the private sector across the whole range of development consulting, socioeconomic and infrastructure development projects.
Such tenders and grant opportunities were solicited from more than 50 international donor agencies. Less than half of the total funded opportunities came from multilateral organizations such as UNDP, UN Women, UNICEF, and EuropeAid. The U.S. government, represented by USAID and the State Department, continued to act as a strong facilitator for international development through the procurement of 25 tenders and grants during the past four months. The remaining tenders and grants were published by individual NGOs, development banks, and international foundations.
The majority of these funds (over 75%) supported development projects that are regional in nature, i.e. projects and services that covers more than one MENA country. One can conclude that donors are slowly adopting projects that fosters regional integration. This translates to more money being invested towards programs that facilitate cross-border inclusion in the MENA region, such as USAID’s US $65 million Sustainable Water Partnership (SWP), and EuropeAid’s €20 million program for engaging civil society in Pan-African issues.
In terms of funding priorities and sectorial distribution, it is evident that economic growth, through the empowerment of women and young individuals, constitutes a major sectorial focus for funding agencies and multilateral organizations. For instance the European Union’s continues to pledge its support for sustainable growth and the improvement of the lives of millions of young women and men in the Southern Neighborhood such as EuropeAid’s €6 million Technical and Vocational Education and training reform Programme in Egypt - Phase II (TVET II), as well as the development of the handicraft sector in the Red Sea governorate program funded by the International Labor Organization in Egypt
Even though more than 50% of funding opportunities take the form of either grants or tender services originating from multilateral/bilateral organizations and other international foundations, one must not disregard the importance of international development banks. These institutions have acquired broad experience and familiarity within the developing aid industry. Their services are tailored towards providing developing nations with the most appropriate monetary instruments to help them finance large-scale development projects, especially ones that require not only financing, but technical support as well.
These type of sovereign loans are a great source of Tenders, Requests for Proposals and Quotations soliciting services, supplies and works to implement longer-term funded socio-economic and infrastructure projects. The World Bank, European Investment Bank and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development are prime examples of institutions that have financed several projects in the MENA region. Amongst them are the $ 5 million technical assistance for the implementation of “Kafr El Sheikh Wastewater Development Project” in Egypt, and the $ 6 million program to modernize schools in Tunisia.
Here is an indicative list of the most recent tenders and grants, for more information please check the Tenders and Grants tracker:
- EBRD: Design studies for rehabilitation of the three existing wastewater treatment plants (Extension), Tunisia, Deadline is July 2016
- Council for Development & Reconstruction: Sorting & composting municipal solid waste in Beirut & mount Lebanon (excluding Jbeil Caza), Deadline 25 July 2016
- EIB: Construction of roads and sanitation networks for Zenata, Morocco, Deadline 23 August 2016
- EIB - Optimizing and monitoring the impact of infrastructure projects on employment in Tunisia.
- Swiss Government - Call for r4d program: support for the solution of global problems, MENA region.
- British Embassy - Grants under the bilateral programme budget of the British Embassy in Cairo.
- Social Fund for Development - Youth employment support (YES) program for Egypt.
- World Bank - Supply, install, construct & test a wastewater treatment plant in Shotb Village - Egypt