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Introduction & SOW Summary:

Chemonics International is implementing Pakistan Small and Medium Enterprise Activity (SMEA), is a five-year project that is supporting Pakistan in the small and medium enterprise (SME) led economic growth to help create jobs, foster entrepreneurship, and contribute to an increased GDP.

With the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the BEE component identifies opportunities for policy responses needed to facilitate the SME growth. Interacting with stakeholders and gaining insights into policy needs with the aim of developing structured narratives. These narratives will subsequently be used by the Component to design targeted interventions to create a conducive business environment for small and medium size enterprises.

The BEE component is looking to hire the services of an Economist for generating periodic macro-economic analyses, especially the impact of Covid-19 related restrictions.  This involves undertaking secondary research and a media scan while gathering insights that focus on the spread of COVID-19 in Pakistan. Particularly, the views of government officials, health practitioners, and other interlocutors and contacts on the COVID-19 virus spread, its impact on the overall economy, Small & Medium Enterprises, trade and distribution channels including cross-border trade with Afghanistan and food security  actions to control the spread and to revive the economy are to be accumulated, analyzed and documented. Informative analysis based on primary and secondary research to substantiate the steps being taken by the government in the economic realm of the country will need to be undertaken.  The consultant will also be required to research on economic and social growth issues, especially related to SMEs, which are required for USAID reporting and conduct research on topics relevant to SMEA programmatic activities.

Further details of the assignment can be seen in attached “Scope of Work”

Economist  (Level of Efforts: 120 Days).

Principal Duties & Responsibilities:

  • Undertake desk research and review all the relevant literature listed in, but not limited to, Annex B of this scope
  • Meet with SMEA team, particularly the COP, and Senior SMEA Management to understand the requirements and expectations under this SoW.
  • Develop periodic technical write-ups, narratives and communication content per the SoW
  • The content developed must be informative, insightful, accurate, and fact-based. It should adequately reflect the views of public and private sector stakeholders on an issue of interest.
  • The content thus develop should be easy to understand and should follow the basic characteristics of an effective piece of communication.
  • Gather international news highlights and provide anecdotes from international news related to global COVID-19 pandemic and various government responses. This shall have to be co-related in the context of Pakistan.
  • Complete all documentary requirements as per SMEA guidance relevant to this SoW.

Specific Tasks of the Consultant:

On a biweekly basis, the consultant will be expected to conduct a scan of news and reports published related to COVID-19 and the economy. Based on this scan, the consultant will select only those pieces of information that are relevant to SMEA’s scope and conduct further analysis through primary and secondary research to develop precise, fact based narratives (1 page per article/report maximum) for submission to the project based on predetermined timelines. These articles/reports will need to include authentic citations and references.

  • Keep up to date with social and economic developments.
  • Conduct research on existing government relief packages and private sector response. 
  • Review global best practices related COVID-19 relief and economic recovery plan and develop write ups for SMEA
  • Consultation with public and private stakeholders to get their views and recommendation on new policies proposed in response to the pandemic.
  • Collecting and analyzing socioeconomic data.
  • Research on SMEA targeted sectors/ topics of relevance.
  • Study the potential economic impact of policy measures being introduced.
  • Undertake desk research and review all the relevant literature provided by SMEA
  • Provide periodic updates about work in progress to SMEA
  • Perform research analysis pertaining to business enabling environment aspects post COVID and on other topics of relevance per the direction of BEE Deputy Component Lead.
  • Develop technical content in the shape of write-ups, reports, presentations, talking points/speeches, stories etc. as per USAID guidelines for communication to USAID or for SMEA internal consumption.
  • Generating responses to general information requests from USAID concerning the economy.
  • Perform any other task as directed by Deputy Component Lead, BEE, Communications Specialist and/or SMEA senior management.


Job Qualification:


  • Master’s degree in Economics, Business Management, Public Policy from a reputed local or international university
  • At least 3-5 years of experience in undertaking research on economic growth and development in Pakistan
  • Good understanding of the current business environment, macro-economic framework and the corresponding institutional arrangements at the federal and provincial levels
  • An avid reader of economic and social issues
  • Deep knowledge and understanding of the national, provincial, local regulatory, legal and policy environment pertaining to the SMEs in Pakistan
  • Demonstrated experience in research and writing articles on economic and social issues will be preferred
  • Excellent communication and report writing skills is mandatory