Specialist to Support Implementation of the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) for Art. 5.1

USAID Vietnam Trade Facilitation Program


Support implementation of the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA)


Proposed Personnel:              Name TBD, National WTO TFA Specialist

Period of Performance:          o/a November 1 – November 30, 2021

Level of Effort:                       20 days (estimated)

Origin/Destination:                Hanoi, Vietnam

Travel Dates:                          n/a

Activity No.:                            FY2021 Activity 1.4 – Administration of WTO TFA implementation.
                                                Detailed assessment of the implementation level of TFA Art. 5.1.
                                                [Sub-activities 1.4.1]

MEL indicator(s):                    EG 2_1-1 and CLBD 9


Project Background:

The USAID Vietnam Trade Facilitation Program is a five-year project that aims to support the adoption and implementation of a more risk-based approach to customs and specialized inspection institutions in Vietnam. The program will work with the General Department of Vietnam Customs (GDVC) to strengthen the National Trade Facilitation Committee (NTFC) of Vietnam and its Working Groups; streamline border clearance procedures (including specialized inspection implemented by other line ministries and agencies); harmonize the implementation of risk-based approaches between the national and provincial levels; train national and provincial customs officers and staff from other ministries on risk management; and facilitate dialogue between customs and business and between stakeholders in Hanoi and in the provinces.

Activity Background

Objective: The overall aim is to provide assessment and recommend solutions for Vietnam to achieve full implementation of the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement Article 5.1 - Notification for Enhanced Controls or Inspection.

Background: Members of the World Trade Organization (WTO) concluded the negotiations on a Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA), which entered into force in February 2017 after two-thirds of WTO members completed their ratification process. Vietnam had notified the WTO of acceptance of the Protocol of Amendment and ratification of the TFA on 15 December 2015. Vietnam has undertaken a self-assessment of the articles or measures of the WTO TFA identifying which are Category ‘A’ (measures that will be implemented by the time the TFA enters into force); Category ‘B’ (measures that will be implemented after a transitional period following entry into force of the TFA); and Category ‘C’ (measures that will be implemented on a date after a transitional period following entry into force of the TFA and requiring the acquisition of assistance and support for capacity building). The Government of Vietnam (GVN) subsequently identified 14 measures as Category ‘B’ and 9 measures as Category ‘C’.

In 2020 the Program conducted a study and issued a Report on Vietnam’s Implementation of the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement. The Report provided an assessment on Vietnam’s current status and situation of the World Trade Organization (WTO) Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) measures identified as Category A, B and C, and recommendations of assessment, validation and further actions and timeline for full implementation of the Agreement against notifications sent to the WTO.

Under this Scope of Work, the Program is seeking a national WTO TFA Specialist to conduct a final conclusion on whether Vietnam could achieve full implementation by the 31 December 2021 deadline of the Agreement’s Article 5.1- Notification for Enhanced Controls or Inspection. His/her final report should identify what are the gaps between the current situation and full implementation, and solutions to achieve the full implementation of the Agreement’s Article 5.1.  

The expert will have to explore more in details the situation

Tasks and Responsibilities

The national WTO TFA specialist will be responsible for providing a report on Vietnam’s readiness to fully implement WTO TFA Article 5.1- Notification for Enhanced Controls or Inspection. The main finding of the report was the following:

Vietnam does not have the legal bases nor a mechanism to issue notifications or guidance to enhance the level of controls, inspections and penalties at the border.

The expert is invited, in the development of his/her tasks, to follow up the recommendations of the report about the implementation of article 5.1, as follows:

  • Vietnam needs to provide the legal bases and operational guidelines to develop an early detection and rapid response mechanism that ensures dissemination of alert notifications to all relevant border agencies in respect of foods, beverages, feedstuffs, animal/plant life or health. 
    • The notifications and guidance (entry, exit and termination) shall be published in a non-discriminatory manner for the user’s knowledge.
    • Per best practices, the new notification mechanism shall be used to advise other countries of enhanced controls, and notifications and guidance shall be incorporated to the risk management system and implemented in the NSW.
    • The mechanism will also assist Customs with potential accountability concerns related to lost goods.

Once the mechanism is in place, training of relevant authorities and an awareness campaign for the users, among others, SMEs including WOB associations, will be required.

Therefore, in order to fulfill the tasks and responsibilities, the expert will:

  • Identify the Government agencies relevant for the implementation of article 5.1 and discuss with them the recommendations to clearly define the scope and identify a roadmap to complete the implementation
  • Coordinate with the relevant departments of GDVC to conduct study of the current notification process of the relevant agencies, the implementation responsibilities of border management forces at all levels, comparing and analyzing the shortcomings, problems, common/separate difficulties and other problems.
  • Identify the necessary legal provisions relevant to the commitments, assessing gaps and recommending specific actions to the Government necessary to implement the commitment
  • Propose, recommend solutions addressing the findings to ensure the effective implementation of the commitment.
  • Verify whether the effective implementation of the commitment might require building the capacity of relevant Government stakeholders
  • Draft report for consultation with stakeholders
  • Complete the Final Report


  • An agreed Workplan for the activities
  • Summary report on relevant legal issues and shortcomings (if any)
  • Summary of current notification process of the relevant agencies, implementation responsibilities of border management forces at all levels, identifying shortcomings, problems, common/specific difficulties.
  • Proposal of solutions addressing the findings, focal points, and roadmap to meet TFA's deadlines
  • Draft report with findings, analysis, conclusions and recommendations
  • The final report includes all the tasks performed including the results of consultation with   the stakeholders


  • Master's degrees in law, international trade, customs administration, trade policy, economics, business administration, or similar field (Bachelor degree with more than 10 years of experience in field may be accepted);
  • Minimum 10 years of experience coordinating or working with line ministries and/or customs in Vietnam at central or provincial level;
  • Proven experience of working with, or practical knowledge of, implementing the WTO TFA;
  • Good understanding of the WTO and WCO instruments such as the Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) and the Revised Kyoto Convention (RKC);
  • Background knowledge and understanding of the current status of Vietnam as related to trade facilitation measures and implementation of the WTO TFA;
  • Proficient in word processing, spreadsheets and office software such as Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Google Applications;
  • Good communicator with fluency in Vietnamese and with strong written, oral and presentation skills;
  • English language skills preferred; and
  • Ability to travel within Vietnam.


The national WTO TFA specialist will report to Mr. Claudio Dordi, Chief of Party ([email protected])  and Mrs. Nguyen Thi Bich Ha, the Program’s Trade and National Trade Facilitation Committee Expert ([email protected]).


How to apply

Proposals should be submitted no later than October 25, 2021 to [email protected] 

Application should include:

  1. Cover letter (no longer than 1 page)
  2. CVs (see attached template); 
  3. Updated USAID 1420 form (see attached template)
  4. Cost proposal (See attached template)


Job Details
Organisation Name: 
Application Deadline: 
Mon, 2021-10-25