Matching Grant Fund: CICC Experts Evaluate 77 Concept Notes for the Cashew Sector

A committee composed of 17 experts from the Consultative International Cashew Council (CICC) evaluated from July 31 to August 4, 2023, in Grand Bassam, a seaside town in southern Côte d'Ivoire, 77 concept notes of the cashew value chain .

These concept notes were received as part of the first call for applications launched in June 2023 by the MOVE-ComCashew project for its competitive Matching Grant Fund.

The Matching Grant Fund is implemented by the Market Oriented Value Chains for Jobs and Growth in the ECOWAS Regions (MOVE-ComCashew) through the “Business Support Facility for Resilient Agricultural Value Chains” programme. The programme is co-financed by the European Union (EU), within the framework of the post-Cotonou agreement with the Secretariat of the Organization of African, Caribbean and Pacific States (OACPS) and by the German Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).

The objective of the Matching Grant Fund is to mobilize contributions from private partners for the implementation of specific interventions aimed at developing the cashew value chain and strengthening ownership in order to stimulate sustainable growth in the cashew sector, strengthen private sector development and improve the productivity and profitability of cashew value chain actors in the 79 Member States of the Organization of African, Caribbean and Pacific States (OACPS).

For five days, fairly and transparently CICC experts from 9 countries; Ghana , Senegal, Nigeria, Burkina Faso, Ivory Coast, Mali, Cameroon, from Togo and Benin assessed the  allocation of scores for the concept notes of Matching Grant Fund applicants. This process took place in three stages. These include the individual assessment stage , peer review, and plenary presentations and discussions .

As at the opening, the closing ceremony was punctuated by enriching speeches. While welcoming the number of Concept Notes received, Costa Cecilia, Program Officer at the Delegation of the European Union (EU) expressed her appreciation for the transparency in the evaluation as well as the professionalism of the experts.

The Value Chain Expert of the Organization of African, Caribbean and Pacific States (OACPS), Yvonne Chileshe indicated that the results from the evaluators will be reviewed by the board of directors on August 16th . A communique will follow to the selected candidates to guide them on the rest of the process.

Yvonne Chileshe did not fail to thank “the Ivorian government, the CICC, the GIZ and the European Union for their support in carrying out this process ” .

The Director of the MOVE-ComCashew project, Rita Weidinger praised the quality of the cashew “will help us to develop this sector for the benefit of development actors, for women and young people (…). For me, your commitment is impressive and unprecedented. See you in Dakar for the evaluation of the full project proposals. added Ms. Weidinger.

At the beginning of his remarks, the Executive Secretary of the CICC, André Tandjiékpon revealed the three stages of the evaluation process. “The individual phase where each expert allocates the score individually; the second phase where the notes are compared with the necessary arguments in groups of three or four to consolidate the exercise done individually and the third phase in plenary, where the arguments are presented to all the experts who validated after discussion " .

These different stages show, according to André Tandjiékpon Executive Secretary of the CICC, that the level of transparency and the degree of traceability of the exercise reassures that the work that has been done is a professional work, which could help the Board of Directors to take right decisions. The CICC remains ready to continue this exercise in order to be able to finalize the process in Senegal.

Successful applicants will be asked to produce a full proposal of their project for this Matching Grant  Fund.



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This website was created and maintained with the financial support of the European Union. Its contents are the sole responsibility of GIZ/MOVE-ComCashew and do not necessarily reflect the views of the European Union.

The Joint Action is jointly co-financed by the European Union under the Samoa agreement with the Organisation of Africa, Caribbean and Pacific States(OACPS) and by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and implemented by GIZ.