Job opportunity:

National Finance Advisor for AgroBIG Programme

Overall role: Responsible for results-based planning, implementation and monitoring of activities that relate to the Programme’s matching grants for agribusinesses and to provision of loan finance to farmers and other agriculture value chain actors through Savings and Credit Cooperatives. In line with the Programme core objectives, responsible for developing the strategy, plans, instruments and guidelines, and their implementation to ensure an equitable access to finance by farmers, agri-MSMEs and other beneficiary groups, and that the financial products match with the needs of diverse clientele. 

Duration of the assignment: 20 months, full-time.  

Duty station: Bahir Dar

Employer: NIRAS International Consulting (

Closing date: CLOSED – Friday, 3rd Jan 2020 by 17 hrs. Delayed applications will not be considered.

Programme for Agro-Business Induced Growth in Amhara National Regional State ‘AgroBIG’ is a bilateral initiative, funded jointly by the governments of Ethiopia and Finland. AgroBIG targets eight woredas: North and South Achefer, North and South Mecha, Bahir Dar Zuria, Dera, Fogera and Libokemkem. The second phase of the Programme is on-going, to run till the end of 2021.

AgroBIG supports value addition in selected agricultural and horticulture value chains to increase incomes and create jobs for farming households and other value chain actors, particularly for women and youth. The Programme supports local governments, individual entrepreneurs and companies, farmers and their cooperatives through grants, loans, market system development, capacity building and technical assistance (TA). Business Development Advisor will complement the Programme TA team that currently consists of five national and two international experts. The TA team is employed by NIRAS ( 


  • Take an active role in revising/finalising guidelines for grant and loan finance, and in finalising negotiations with partnering financial institutions (FI);
  • In collaboration with other Programme Support Unit (PSU) members, actively promote awareness among implementing partners of the Programme’s loan and grant schemes and related activities;
  • With participating FIs, and through active liaison with other FI’s and development actors facilitating financial services to agribusinesses and entrepreneurs, constantly analyse need for developing/revising products, and their marketing and delivery;
  • Facilitate coaching and on-the-job support for Cooperative Savings and Credit Unions (COSACUs) and Savings and Credit Cooperatives (SACCOs) in their operations and capacity building endeavours;
  • Assess the demand and coordinate and monitor the provision of relevant technical assistance to grant recipients to enhance attaining their result targets; 
  • In cooperation with other TA/PSU team members participate in the development and delivery of training, coaching and mentoring activities for the Programme’s partners and beneficiaries related to accessing and managing business finance, to business development, and other topics as relevant considering the accrued expertise and professional specialities of the advisor;
  • Take responsibility for budget and other resources assigned to access to finance activities, assuring satisfactory performance, measurement and reporting;
  • Participate in the Programme’s overall planning, budgeting, monitoring and reporting, with particular attention on practices that ensure and strengthen synergies between the Programme’s output areas (Access to Finance and Capacity Building)
  • Closely monitor the performance of participating FIs through regular field visits, internal performance reviews and analysis of the accumulating data; Keep the PSU informed of the progress, propose and coordinate measures to resolve emerging challenges.
  • Support in risk management of activities associated with access to grant and loan finance.

Minimum requirements:

  • Master’s degree or equivalent in agribusiness, banking and finance, financial management or rural credit;
  • Minimum 10 years of relevant work experience in providing specialist services and technical support in rural finance, financial inclusion and procurement systems;
  • At least 5 years of experience with development and implementation of rural finance and financial inclusion projects funded by development agencies;

Valuable work experience and personal qualities

  • Proven experience in financing MSME agribusinesses and value chain actors, including working with banks, lower-tier financial institutions, commercialising farmers, and agri-MSMEs;
  • Experience in working with regulating authorities to meet compliance and reporting requirements;
  • A strong network or working relationships with the banking industry, lower-tier FIs and the regulatory authorities in Ethiopia will be a strong advantage;
  • Experience in small-scale and gender-sensitive agribusiness development, business planning and mentoring;
  • Familiarity with the principles of adult learning, proven experience in designing and organizing workshops and trainings for extension staff, subject-matter specialists, entrepreneurs, farmers etc;
  • Familiarity with the Programme geographical area is an asset; 
  • Excellent interpersonal, leadership and communication skills;
  • Innovative and enthusiastic, able to gather people around new ideas and concepts and to build their commitment and ownership;
  • Ability to work in a multi-cultural environment;
  • Proven ability to write reports clearly and concisely;
  • Fluency in English and Amharic (oral and writing); 
  • Fluency in MS Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint);
  • Uncompromised personal integrity.

How to apply?

Candidates fulfilling the requirements are welcomed to apply. Download application form with detailed instructions here: Application Form

Female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply. 

Application submission deadline: CLOSED – Friday, 3rd Jan 2020 by 17 hrs. Delayed applications will not be considered.