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close this bookHandbook for Emergencies - Second Edition (UNHCR, 1999, 414 p.)
close this folder8. Implementing Arrangements
View the document(introduction...)
View the documentIntroduction
View the documentImplementing Arrangements
View the documentImplementing Procedures
View the documentMonitoring, Reporting and Evaluation
View the documentSpecial Considerations
View the documentKey References
View the documentAnnexes

Annexes

Annex 1 - Sample Letter of Mutual Intent to Conclude an Agreement

NATIONS UNIES - HAUT COMMISSARIAT POUR LES REFUGIES

UNITED NATIONS - HIGH COMMISSIONER FOR REFUGEES

Date

Notre/Our code:

Dear

I should like to refer to our exchanges [add details as appropriate] concerning the implementation by [name of implementing partner] on behalf of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) of a programme of emergency assistance to [origin and number of beneficiaries].

It is my understanding that it is our mutual intention to conclude and sign as soon as possible an agreement covering our cooperation in the above mentioned programme. This agreement will incorporate, inter alia, the attached clauses and will require [name of implementing partner] to report in financial and narrative form on the use of all contributions received from the High Commissioner. The conclusion of an agreement embodying these requirements is mandatory under the Financial Rules of UNHCR whenever funds are made available by UNHCR.

I should be grateful if you would confirm in writing below that this understanding is correct, and your agreement that the use of the sum of [amount in local currency or in US dollars], that the High Commissioner intends to make available to [name of implementing partner] on receipt of this confirmation, will be considered as subject to the terms of the Agreement, once concluded and signed.

[signature and title of addressee of ELOI]

I confirm that the understanding set out above is that of [name of implementing partner], which agrees that the use of the sum of [amount in local currency or in US dollars] will be considered as subject to the terms of the Agreement, once concluded and signed.

[signature and title of addressee of letter above, and date]

MANDATORY CLAUSES

Clauses governing Rate of Exchange (1.08 or 2.03), Maintenance of Financial and Project Records (3.08), Inspection and Audit (3.11 and 3.12), Audit Certificate (3.13) and Non-Liability of the High Commissioner (4.05 and 4.06) are STATUTORY REQUIREMENTS and cannot be excluded (paragraph numbers given are those from UNHCR Manual, Chapter 4, Appendix 8). These clauses are set out below:

Rate of Exchange

1.08 (if the government is a signatory to the Agreement): grant the most favourable official rate of exchange for all conversions into local currency of funds provided by the High Commissioner for the implementation of the project governed by the UNHCR Agreement;

2.03 (if an NGO is the implementing partner): apply the most favourable official rate of exchange for all transactions relating to the implementation of the project governed by the UNHCR Agreement;

Maintenance of Financial and Project Records

3.08 maintain separate project records and accounts containing current information and documentation which, inter alia, shall comprise:

a) copies of the UNHCR Agreement(s) and all revisions thereto;

b) payment vouchers, clearly showing the (Sub-) Project symbol, the name of the payee, the amount, the purpose and date of disbursement, evidencing all payments made and with all pertinent supporting documentation attached;

c) vouchers evidencing the receipt of all remittances, cash or any other form of credit to the project account;

d) periodic analyses of actual expenditure against the project's budget;

e) records of all financial commitments entered into during the project;

f) reports by auditors on the accounts and activities of the project;

Inspection and Audit

3.11 facilitate inspection and audit of the project governed by the UNHCR Agreement by the United Nations Internal Audit Service or any other person duly authorized by the High Commissioner on behalf of the United Nations. Should they at any time wish to do so, the United Nations Board of Auditors may also carry out an audit of the project. Audits of the project will include, inter alia, the examination of the project accounting records in order to determine that the charging of administrative and operational support costs to the project complies with those specified in the annexes to the UNHCR Agreement. For auditing purposes, project accounting records shall be retained for the six years following the project's termination;

3.12 facilitate visits by the High Commissioner or of any other person duly authorized by him/her to the project site(s) to evaluate the progress and achievements of the project during its period of implementation or thereafter;

Audit Certificate for Governmental Implementing Partners

3.13 submit to the High Commissioner, within three months of the final date for liquidation of commitments, an audit certificate issued by the appropriate government audit authority, together with such comments as the auditor may deem appropriate in respect of project operations generally and, in particular, the financial situation as reported by the Government;

Audit Certificate for International NGO Implementing Partners

3.14 submit to the High Commissioner, within six months of the end of the Agency's fiscal year, a copy of its consolidated audited financial statements, wherein UNHCR funding is clearly identified, issued by an independent audit authority and as presented to and endorsed by the Agency's governing body. The audit report and opinion should include such comments as the auditor may deem appropriate in respect of UNHCR funded project operations generally and, in particular, the opinion should clearly indicate that UNHCR funds were duly included in the audit;

Audit Certificate for National NGO Implementing Partners

3.15 for all UNHCR Agreements for a value of US$100,000 and above, submit to the High Commissioner, within six months of the final date for liquidation of commitments, an audit certificate issued by an independent audit authority. The audit report and opinion should include such comments as the auditor may deem appropriate in respect of project operations generally and, in particular, the financial situation as reported by the Agency to UNHCR in its final Sub-Project Monitoring Report. For all UNHCR Agreements for a value of less than US$ 100,000, UNHCR reserves the right to request an audit in accordance with Clause 3.11 above.;

Non-liability

4.05 not be liable to indemnify any third party in respect of any claim, debt, damage or demand arising out of the implementation of the project governed by the UNHCR Agreement and which may be made against the other parties to the Agreement;

4.06 not accept liability for compensation for the death, disability or the effects of other hazards which may be suffered by employees of the other parties to the UNHCR Agreement as a result of their employment on work which is the subject matter of the Agreement.

Annex 2 - Procurement by a UNHCR Field Office

1. Introduction

1.1. The procedures applicable to the procurement of goods and/or services by UNHCR Headquarters or UNHCR offices in the field (other than contractual arrangements for the employment of staff) vary according to the US dollar value (at the prevailing United Nations rate of exchange) of the goods or services, and are described below.

1.2 For all purchases of substantial quantities of relief or other supplies by UNHCR offices in the field. Representatives should nominate a purchasing/logistics focal point with a clear line of responsibility. Local purchases will be initiated by, or at least cleared with, the purchasing/logistics focal point. In all circumstances, including the evaluation of contracts for the supply of goods and services or consultancies, the procedures described below will apply. The term "Purchase Order" is to be read as also applying to other forms of authorization used in relation to contracts for services or corporate or institutional consultancies.

1.3 In all cases of procurement of goods and/or services, the procedures and controls applied should be in accordance with Appendix 8 of Chapter 4 of the UNHCR Manual and must provide an open, competitive, qualitative and accountable process to obtain such goods or services which meet project requirements at the lowest available cost. It is the responsibility of the addressee of the Letter of Instruction to ensure that the relevant procedures are adhered to.

1.4 All contracts entered into for the procurement of goods and/or services should ensure exemption from, or reimbursement of, all customs duties, levies and direct taxes on services and goods, supplies or any other articles imported or domestically purchased.

1.5 It is the responsibility of the Representative to ensure that each UNHCR office in the field maintains a register of all commercial contracts entered into and that a sequential number is assigned to every such contract.

1.7 For a value of less than US$ 2,500

A Purchase Order may be issued without recourse to formal tender, provided that funds are available under the Letter of Instruction and that at least three informal offers or prices have been considered and the best offer has been selected.

1.8 For a value of over US$ 2,500 and up to US$ 5,000

A Purchase Order may be issued provided that funds are available under the Letter of Instruction and that at least three informal quotations have been compared and the best offer has been selected. A written record of the quotations and the reasons for the selection must be kept.

1.9 For a value of over US$ 5,000 and up to US$ 50,000

A Purchase Order may be issued provided that funds are available under the Letter of Instruction and that selection has been made on the basis of at least three competitive offers obtained in response to a formal Quotation Request sent to selected suppliers inviting them to submit sealed quotations within a specified time frame. Chart 3.F and Annex VIII of the Supplies and Food Aid Field Handbook provide guidelines and an example of a Quotation Request. The Quotation Request must stipulate that all offers must be received at the UNHCR office in signed and sealed envelopes and marked with the Quotation Request number. All quotations received must remain sealed and must be kept under lock and key until the expiration of the bid deadline. All bids must be opened before a witness by the Administrative Officer or the Officer in charge of administration in the office, and must be initialled by both the person opening the bids and the witness. The witness shall be selected by the Representative and drawn from the professional or national officer categories. All formal quotations will be compared on a Tabulation of Bids form as per Annex IX of the Supplies and Food Aid Field Handbook. The recommended supplier and the reasons for selecting that supplier will be stated thereon.

1.10 For a value of over US$ 50,000 and up to US$ 100,000

Representatives will establish a Purchasing Committee to consider bids and to make the appropriate recommendations. The approval of Headquarters is not required. Rules and procedures concerning Purchasing Committees and their composition are set out below. In a country with more than one Field/Sub Office, the Representative may wish to establish Purchasing Committees at different duty stations. Depending on local costs and current exchange rates, Representatives may also lower the financial limit of procurement to be considered by the Purchasing Committee. The Committee will consider quotations subject to the same conditions as set out in paragraph 1.9 above. If appropriate, the Representative and/or the Committee may wish to request specialist advice from the Programme and Technical Support Section or the Supply and Transport Section at Headquarters.

For a value of US$ 100,000 or more:

1.11 A submission must be made to the Committee on Contracts at Headquarters except in cases where Headquarters has authorized the establishment of a Local Committee on Contracts as described in 3 below. For submissions to the Headquarters Committee on Contracts, a minimum of four formal quotations must be requested and considered by the Purchasing Committee which will make a proposal as to the most suitable supplier to the Committee on Contracts through the relevant Desk at Headquarters. In cases where Headquarters has authorized the establishment of a Local Committee on Contracts, the latter may evaluate and decide on all bids without recourse to the Purchasing Committee. Nevertheless, in all cases, the relevant specialists in the Programme and Technical Support Section and the Supply and Transport Section must be consulted before or during the tendering and evaluation stages so as to ensure compliance with technical requirements and that prices are compatible with international market rates for the goods or services under consideration. Submissions to the Committee on Contracts should include information as shown in Chart 3.G of the Supplies and Food Aid Field Handbook. After approval by the Committee on Contracts (or a Local Committee on Contracts), a Purchase Order may be issued.

2. Purchasing Committee

2.1 Procurement of goods or services by a UNHCR office in the field for a value of over US$ 50,000 and up to US$ 100,000 must be approved by a Purchasing Committee. This Committee will also prepare proposals to the Headquarters Committee on Contracts for procurement for a value of over US$ 100,000 in cases where Headquarters has not authorized the establishment of a Local Committee on Contracts. The Purchasing Committee will be established and chaired by the Representative and will consolidate the requirements, oversee the tendering process, select suitable local suppliers and record its recommendations in writing.

2.2 The Committee will be composed of Members and alternate members designated by the Representative and drawn from the professional or national officer categories. Staff members responsible for procurement should be excluded from membership. In cases where several implementing partners require similar supplies the Representative may consider including in the Purchasing Committee staff from implementing agencies. A quorum will consist of three Members.

2.3 The staff member in charge of procurement should present a written proposal to the Purchasing Committee which will include information on the goods or services to be procured as per Chart 3.G of the Supplies and Food Aid Field Handbook. The minutes of the meeting will be taken and issued (at least in draft) within two working days after the meeting. Alternatively, particularly in an emergency, Members of the Committee may approve purchase by signature of the proposal with appropriate comments. In general, the Committee should adopt procedures similar to those of the UNHCR Committee on Contracts as set out in Annex 8.5 of Chapter 4 of the UNHCR Manual, except for the provisions concerning emergency procedures.

3. Local Committee on Contracts

3.1 In a UNHCR office in the field, the Representative may request Headquarters to approve the establishment of a Local Committee on Contracts, particularly in the early stages of an emergency operation and when required goods or services are known to be available locally or regionally. The authority to establish a Local Committee on Contracts must be obtained from Headquarters, which will normally stipulate the purpose, the geographic, time and financial limits, the necessity to apply the relevant rules and procedures and, if applicable, the necessity to consult the Supply and Transport Section or the Programme and Technical Support Section on the prices and sources of supply of commodities and/or services available in the region. The Committee will be chaired by the Representative or by a formally designated alternate, and will be composed of at least three professional staff members. If there is no quorum, the matter will be referred to the Committee on Contracts at Headquarters. The Local Committee on Contracts will consider quotations subject to the same conditions as set out in paragraph 1.9 above.

3.2 All requests for the establishment (or the extension of the period of validity) of a Local Committee on Contracts should be sent via the Desk to the Chairman of the Committee on Contracts who will check the criteria and the justifications provided, and, if appropriate, request the Secretary of the Committee on Contracts to prepare an authorizing communication. The authorizing communication should be cleared by the relevant Regional Bureau and the Chief of the Supply and Transport Section, and be authorized by the Chairman of the Committee on Contracts. Requests for the establishment of a Local Committee on Contracts must include a full justification as well as information on the requested time and financial limits, and must also confirm that the goods or services being sought are available locally or regionally and that the requisite minimum number of professional staff would be available to act as Members of the Local Committee on Contracts. Requests must include the names of three members and three alternate members.

3.3 The Representative shall appoint a secretary to the Local Committee on Contracts to receive submissions to the Committee, to schedule meetings and secure the relevant documentation, to conduct required correspondence, to maintain the Committee's files and to prepare and distribute minutes of the Committee's proceedings.

3.4 Copies of the minutes and proceedings of each meeting of the Local Committee on Contracts, together with a Tabulation of Bids form and copies of the contracts entered into or purchase orders placed (and any amendments to these) must be forwarded to the Secretary of the Committee on Contracts at Headquarters who will present these to the Chairman and Members of the Committee on Contracts for their comments. The minutes must contain a summary of the discussion, the reasons for decisions taken, details regarding the contractor or supplier selected and the potential costs involved.

Annex 3 - Example of a Standard Emergency Situation Report (SITREP)

1. In emergencies, it is essential that regular situation reports reach the outside world (other UN agencies, implementing partners). The frequency of such reports will be determined by the characteristics of the situation; more frequent reports will be necessary in the initial stage of an emergency. Situation reports should give an overall view of the situation with sufficient factual content and explanation of changes since the last report to answer rather than raise substantive questions. By indicating progress achieved, problems encountered and steps being taken or planned to overcome these problems, the reports should give a cumulative picture of how the needs of the refugees are being met. It should report on actions including actual and planned activities; however, it should not dwell on intentions.

The SITREP should:

Be short;

Focus on priority areas;

Give quantitative data in a standard format (e.g. give the death rate as deaths/10,000/day NOT the number of people who have died);

Highlight trends (e.g. increasing/decreasing water supply, increase/decrease in arrival rate);

Clearly say who is expected to take any actions which are specified.

2. A suggested format is given below. Information contained in the SITREP should be analyzed and consolidated before being passed on to the next management level. The practice of simply copying "raw" and un-analyzed information from one level to another should be avoided. If the same format is used by all levels from site to central office to Headquarters, it will make it easier to consolidate reports from various areas. Major headings should as a rule be the same in each report, indicating "no change" if appropriate. The report can either be structured by sector of assistance with sites covered under each sector, or alternatively, by site, with sectors of assistance covered under each site heading. In either case, the information under each sector of assistance and for each location should cover as applicable:

i. Current situation;

ii. Particular problem areas, remedial action planned with time frame;

iii. Any variation from overall implementing arrangements;

iv. Any action required from the addressee of the SITREP.

3. The reports should be sequentially numbered, copied to other UNHCR offices as appropriate (including the UNHCR liaison office in New York). The report may be used as the basis for wider situation reports issued from Headquarters.

SITREP (number)

COUNTRY

COVERING PERIOD (date) TO (date)

Drafted, cleared, authorized by () on (date).

A. GENERAL SITUATION

B. MAJOR DEVELOPMENTS

Summary of general assessment of situation, assessment of refugee location, and field deployment of UNHCR staff. Summary of major trends including protection.

C. REFUGEE STATISTICS AND REGISTRATION

By location in country of origin or by distinct groups if not self-evident. Explanation of changes since last report. Indication of sources, e.g. government, UNHCR, etc. Any additional information (as relevant) on gender breakdown, vulnerable cases, variances between UNHCR and official figures, group or individual determination, etc. A format for reporting on population in emergency situation reports is given in Annex 1 of chapter 11 on population estimation and registration.

D. PROTECTION AND DURABLE SOLUTIONS Summary of any developments.

E. OPERATIONS

E.1. Coordination

Government departments, UN system, NGOs - both at central and field levels.

E.2. Overall Implementing Arrangements

Role of authorities. Operational role of UNHCR. Role of UNHCR's government counterparts, other UN agencies, international organizations and NGO partners. Other sources of significant assistance.

E.3. Assistance

Summary of main developments since the last report, broken down by sector and/or site, as applicable. Additional information provided could include major problems encountered in programme delivery and modifications required to implementing arrangements.

F. EXTERNAL RELATIONS

Significant events in relations with donor government representatives, with diplomatic missions in general and with the media.

G. ADMINISTRATION AND STAFFING

Establishment of UNHCR presence, office premises, vehicles and equipment, staffing arrangements, local recruitment, etc.

Annex 4 - Format for Reporting on Population in Emergency Situation Reports

Period: From _______________ to_________________

Type/
status of
population

Current
location

Origin/
from

Pop. at
start of
period

New
arrivals

Decreases

Pop. at end of period






Vol. return

Resettle-
ment

Other

Total

% of
total
0-4
years*

%of
total
who are
female*

*Estimate

Main source of information is Government; UNHCR; NGO

Main basis of the information is Registration; Estimate