This Action is one of the three contracts concluded by EC to facilitate delivery of the 2 Services. Of the total funding for the Action, EUR17,5 Million will be reserved for grants through a Call for Proposals to finance the operations of the RICs in the execution of the activities outlined under the Action (mainly consolidation, extension and development of new applications). An earlier exercise of a Call for Concept Notes allowed the AUC to estimate the configuration of consortia that will be competitively applying for the Grants. It revealed that all the applications under the 2 Services were selected by at least one consortium; except for one: “Surveillance, Monitoring and Assessment of Environmental Impacts of Mining activities.”
The AUC will use its own grants procedures to achieve the objectives of the Programme ensuring that funds are spent in a transparent, efficient and fair manner. Thus, the bulk of the implementation work will be done by consortia of regional institutions led by the RICs that will apply for the grants. Each of the five regions of the continent will have at least one RIC to coordinate technical execution of the Action.
On the other hand, the capacity development component will be ensured through a procurement process to be overseen by the AUC. Part of the training and capacity development should ultimately be carried out through the Pan African University.
Finally, the AUC will use its procedures in organizing events.
Grants Award Procedure
The AUC will use its grant procedures and notably its Grant Management Manual that provides appropriate administrative policies, standard procedures, internal controls and institutional capacity for the Commission to effectively carry out the grant management process and oversight, from contracting, implementation, monitoring and reporting, to the closure of the project. The grants under this Action will be implemented through an Open Call for Proposals, inviting RICs to apply for the grants to implement the two GMES & Africa Services in their respective regions according to the policy priorities defined by the countries of their regions through their RECs and other Regional Organizations as the case may be. The programme is open to consortia of regional implementing organizations led by RICs that have regional implementation mandates, regional coverage, and national linkages, among others. The Open Call for Proposals with a total envelope of EUR17,500,000 will be structured in 2 lots for the 2 Services: Lot 1 – Water and Natural Resources Service, and Lot 2 – Marine and Coastal Resources Service.
All documents will be submitted at one stage (Concept Note and full Application Proposal). However, in the first instance, only the Concept Notes will be evaluated. Thereafter, for applicants whose Concept Notes have been pre-selected, an evaluation of the full proposal will be carried out. Further to the evaluation of the full proposals, an eligibility check will be performed for those RICs that are provisionally selected. This check will be undertaken on the basis of the supporting documents requested by AUC as the Contracting Authority and the signed "Declaration by the Applicant" sent together with the application.
There are seven phases for the complete assessment of the applications
- Phase 1: Development of Guidelines for Applicants, in agreement with the European Commission, which explain the purpose of the Call for Proposals, the rules regarding the eligibility of applicants and partners, the Service/s and costs which are eligible for financing, and the evaluation criteria.
- Phase 2: Launching and Publishing of the Call.
- Phase 3: Administrative Checks
- Phase 4: (i) Evaluation of Concept Notes by independent Assessors. In this phase, those applications not meeting the threshold will be eliminated. Applicants will be ranked according to their scores. (ii) Evaluation of Full Applications
- Phase 5: Verification procedures
- Phase 6: Contracts Award and Execution
- Phase 7: Monitoring and Evaluation
At every assessment phase, those applications not meeting the threshold will be eliminated while those proceeding to the next phase will be ranked by scores. The ranking will continue at every stage until the final stage depending on the financial call package, the first few in the ranking will be considered while the next few in the ranking are kept as reserve list.
AUC procurement policy and rules apply in all the services that require procurement from the AUC end. There are several procurement exercises to be undertaken in this Action. The procurement plan covers two categories:
For the first year (2017) of the GMES & Africa programme, AUC awards a single contract to procure acquisition and installation of 20 full data receiving stations.. The maintenance for the existing stations (from MESA project) and the new ones will start from the second year (from 2018) of the project until the end (2020). For the entire duration of the GMES & Africa programme, there are various meetings and workshops requiring some expenditure related to tea/coffee breaks, Rental of Conference rooms, Rental of interpretation equipment and Local Transportation.
For the entire programme duration, procurement of services related to Training, Interpretation, Expenditure verification (audit), Evaluation, Printing of brochures newsletters and Advertisements are required.