The World Bank Announces Two Corn Consulting Bids in Uganda


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The World Bank announced twin international Corn consulting tenders in Uganda the last month. This request for expression of interest is for a firm Selection. The first one is UNBS Corn Monitoring & Enforcement Standards. The bid was announced on 12 January and closed on 30 January. The objective of this assignment is to work with Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) to (i) develop a Corn Quality Monitoring and Enforcement Framework and Inspections checklists for risk-based enforcement; (ii) support regulatory compliance by Corn stores and others by the developing simple non-legal language guidelines for stakeholders; (iii) identify existing Standards/laws/regulations that can be applied to ensure bulk purchase of good quality of Corn grain for both domestic and export markets; and (iv) articulate quality requirements and recommend revision to national procurement legislation to account for quality in Corn purchases. 

Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) ‘s mandate includes a quality assurance. The institution’s role also includes carrying out conformity assessment of products and services based on quality and standards requirements, protecting the consumers against substandard, shoddy, and hazardous products, and facilitating the growth of strong private sector competitiveness on a sustainable basis, among others. During the pre-implementation meetings, stakeholders indicated the following challenges at the national level.

While UNBS has the national mandate to enforce compliance with quality standards for both Corn grain and flour, enforcement activities focus on only Corn flour production due to limited staff and other resources. There is minimal or no quality monitoring or enforcement of standards on Corn grain at the district level. At the same time, Corn quality standards are not easily accessible by the various stakeholders and are not well understood, which could make compliance difficult for willing stakeholders.

The project proposes the development of a Corn Quality Standards Monitoring and Enforcement Framework that includes Inspections Checklists which will guide risk-based inspections that prioritize inspection of high-risk/high-impact stakeholders (based on their handling large volumes of Corn and high probability of not complying with EAS on Corn quality). The Framework will be piloted in Mubende district and with members of TGCU. Development of the Framework will also require that information on Corn quality standards is accessible to key stakeholders.

Large trucks (10 MT and above) buy (much low quality) Corn directly from farmers and district stores with no checks or consequences. Anecdotal information from Mubende district indicates that up to 300,000 MT of low-quality Corn (more than 60% of the estimated total supply) were bought by Kenyan-owned trucks in Season 1, 2022. Moreover, no controls or checks for the bulk movement of Corn across the country exist.

The project proposes an intervention that can be implemented and enforced regarding bulk purchases of grain. The Government policy for Corn procurement is not linked to standards. There is a quality cost, and vendors, knowing that bulk buyers are only willing to purchase Corn products of demonstrable quality, will have the incentive to trade in quality grain.

Legal Support for Uganda’s Corn Regulations

The second one is Legal and Regulatory Support for Corn Regulations. The bid was announced on 24 January and remains open till 06 February. The World Bank’s International Financial Corporation is seeking support from legal expertise in Uganda. The firm will work with the Mubende district (and relevant National agencies) to develop and support the enhancement and the dissemination of the Districts Ordinance 2017 (Corn Quality Control) bylaws on Corn quality standards, compliance monitoring, and enforcement for stores, warehouses, and large trucks (>10 MT).

Work will include regulatory review, consultation, analysis, recommendations, and legal drafting. Attention to regulatory advice that supports basic implementation and enforcement is critical. Dissemination of the regulatory framework and compliance responsibilities is included in work responsibilities.

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