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TENDER ANNOUNCEMENT: ASEAN Business Sentiment Study 2020

Needs and Objectives

In the short to medium term, the study is expected to provide valuable insights to the ASEAN policymakers on the ASEAN indigenous enterprises’ general sentiment on the perceived impacts of ASEAN economic integration under the AEC on their businesses and industries, as well as their views and recommendations on how ASEAN can further develop and improve the AEC. Assessing the business sentiment of ASEAN indigenous enterprises (ranging from large to small ones) towards the AEC will likewise provide insights on how to strengthen public-private engagement. With private sector input and feedback, the concerns of businesses, especially the SMEs will put forward. As such, policy makers will be able to make better, more informed policy choices and develop initiatives to better respond to the needs of the business community. In the long run, the project will contribute towards a more supportive policy environment enabling the successful implementation of AEC initiatives.

In terms of the focus area of trade in services, AMS are expected to benefit from further liberalisation and elimination of barriers to trade through the implementation of AFAS. Understanding the views of ASEAN enterprises may become a catalyst for a more productive and fruitful discussion among AMS to successfully implement AFAS.

The result of the study will be reported to the AEM and Leaders for their consideration and will also be used as inputs for the Mid-Term Review (MTR) of the AEC Blueprint 2025, and ultimately feed into ASEAN policymaking processes . This is to ensure that the policies developed in ASEAN will actually be beneficial for the private sector operating in ASEAN.

The study must ensure a well-balanced representation of large enterprises and SMEs in the survey design and related activities. Another important consideration is ensuring the participation of women-led ASEAN businesses and enterprises, and their women executives in the various data and information gathering activities, so as to find out business sentiments and views on strengthening women’s entrepreneurship and women’s economic empowerment in the AEC.


The main output of this project is an assessment of current business sentiment of ASEAN enterprises (both large enterprises and SMEs alike) towards the AEC and the services sector, in particular, so that insights can be obtained on how to best strengthen public-private engagement to support AEC and integrating the region into the global economy. It will have qualitative and quantitative components.

Quantitative Component:

  1. Identification of key elements of the AEC with the most impact on the conduct and performance of ASEAN businesses;
  2. Formulation of the questions for the survey (in consultation with the ASEAN Secretariat, and noting that for the services part, the questions may need to be tailored by sectors). Where needed, the questions should be translated to the national languages of each AMS;
  3. The pre-testing/piloting of the survey template/questions;
  4. Identification of appropriate sampling methodologies (in consultation with the ASEAN Secretariat);
  5. Rationale for and description of the method of survey and platforms to be used;
  6. Description of data analysis methods that will be used, including any software used and how data validation will be done; and,
  7. Description of how the findings will be presented and reported, preferably using infographics.

Qualitative Component:

This involves the conduct of Focus Group Discussion (FGD) and Key Informant Interview (KII)

  1. Description of how the focus group discussions will be conducted;
  2. Identification of key questions to be covered in the FGD and KII;
  3. Rationale for sampling and description of methods to recruit participants for the FGD and KII; and,
  4. Rationale for and description of data analysis methodology, including any software used, and how the findings will be presented and reported.

The output will be delivered in stages:

  1. Interim Report: This includes i) Final survey questionnaire; ii) Survey results; iii) Quantitative data analysis to be reported by the ASEAN Business Advisory Council (ASEAN-BAC) at the 27th AEM Retreat.
  2. Revised Report: A consolidated report incorporating the result of the quantitative data analysis from the interim report as well as the result of the FGD and KII. This report will be circulated to the ASEAN Coordinating Committee on MSME (ACCMSME) and relevant divisions/directorate of ASEC for review.
  3. Final Report: A 30-40-page report with both quantitative and qualitative findings, the distillation of the information gathered, and conclusions reached. An annex containinga detailed discussion of the quantitative and qualitative analyses, including methodologies, survey results, and documentation of FGDs and KIIs will also be part of the final research report. This should also include suggested cover design of the study and set of presentation materials.
  4. Executive Summary: A five-page summary of the study, which will be part of the final report and contains the essential elements of findings and recommendations.

In addition to the main outputs, the following reports will have to be submitted:

  1. Inception Report: To be produced at the inception of the project outlining the conceptual framework and methodology to be used to undertake the business sentiment study, detailed work plan, management plan and budget . This should also include the outline of the study; general area to be covered in the survey questionnaire; sampling and data collection methods; and, quantitative and qualitative analysis methodologies.
  2. Key Activity/Event Reports: In line with the various outputs which would be presented in various events (including FGDs and KIIs) reports would be prepared which would provide the event proceedings, and recommendations, if any;
  3. Project completion report, this will establish a record of the project achievements against the project’s original intended purpose and outputs. It is intended to assist in assessing impact, draw out conclusions and lessons learned that may be valuable in designing new related initiatives.to finalise all project activities completed, capture learning from the project and to handover raw data collected throughout project implementation period.

Scope of Services

The consultancy will be undertaken over a continuous effective period of 64 calendar weeks with approximately 37 person weeks of professional services. Work will commence immediately after contract signing.

The number of person working weeks is intended to indicate the amount of relative effort required to deliver the corresponding outputs. The calculation is based on assumption of 5 person days per week. Actual time will be agreed in negotiation with the successful bidder.


Interested consulting firms are invited to submit a proposal in response to these Terms of Reference. This proposal should be in two separate parts: Technical and Financial components.

The Technical component should present the following information:

  • A brief discussion indicating the bidder’s understanding of the needs of the project;
  • A brief analysis of key issues; A methodological discussion of how the bidder proposes to address those needs including assessment of key issues, analytical strategies that will underlie the project, specific techniques to be utilised, and practical discussion of possible limitations in carrying out the project;
  • A detailed work plan that specifies activities to be undertaken, expected outputs and deliverables, resources to be utilised and timing;
  • Staffing and management plan;
  • A discussion on how measures to ensure the future sustainability of the outcomes of the project will be addressed;
  • CVs of all proposed experts;
  • Brief discussion of firm’s past experience in undertaking similar work and brief summaries of all projects undertaken.

The Financial component should specify:

  1. Professional fees of expert(s);
  2. Management and/or operational fees (if any), which include all costs incurred by the person/entity/company for internal coordination, communication, travels and any other associated project management cost;
  3. Applicable taxes such as VAT, GST, PPN. See Section XI point 3 for an additional note on tax liability.

Activity costs for experts and participants such as reimbursable expenses for airfare, other travel costs and daily subsistence allowance for workshops, meetings, and all other agreed activities do not need to be included in the Financial Component. These items will be discussed with the preferred contractor during the finalisation of the scope of services. Costs will be based on prevailing ASEC rates.

Submission of Application

Bidders should send their proposals with a cover letter, materials specified in Section IX above and other supporting documents with “ASEAN Business Sentiment Study 2020” as the subject via email to tender@aadcp2.org, no later than 15 June 2020 at 05:00pm Jakarta time.

For Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ), please visit http://aadcp2.org/aadcp-ii-tender-frequently-asked-questions/

Any queries on the TOR should be sent to contact@aadcp2.org with the subject line:” Query – ASEAN Business Sentiment Study 2020’.


Terms of Reference ASEAN Business Sentiment Study 2020

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