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Request for Proposals

Mapping the dimensions of personal debt as a justice issue in Myanmar

Despite the opening of the economy and several reform efforts, Myanmar’s per capita GDP remains the lowest in South East Asia.  According to the World Bank, one third of Myanmar’s population is poor and another 14% are “near poor”.  The most common approach for dealing with shocks such as illness or crop failures etc is to borrow money. “A fifth of households in Myanmar are estimated to be over-indebted, defined as having a debt-to-asset ratio equal to or larger than 0.5.” 

The MyJustice nationwide survey of 2017 found that debt is the most common dispute that people speak about.  UNDP and other research have also shown that debt disputes are one of the most common disputes in the community. This highlights the importance and challenges of equitable access to credit in a transitioning country like Myanmar, without which there are both justice and development consequences.

Yet, debt disputes in Myanmar have largely been overlooked as a justice related focus area. There is hardly any research or programming around debt disputes. While it is well known that disputes relating to loans and debts are prevalent, there is little information on how these disputes are resolved in the community and how dispute resolution can be strengthened.

It is in this context that British Council and MyJustice calls for proposal in response to its RFP to conduct research comprising a desk review and field work, and taking a gender equality and social inclusion approach to:

1.      Map the dimensions of the personal debt issue (whether borrowing from formal or informal lenders) in Myanmar as a justice concern

2.      Map the key actors and processes involved in resolving debt disputes, the pathways that people traverse to reach these justice actors and examine how disputes are addressed and resolved and

3.     Provide basic information and make recommendations to

a. Policy makers for protecting people from unfair practices of informal money lenders and supporting poor people in resolving disputes relating to debt;

b. International development partners and CSOs on supporting poor people in protecting themselves when seeking loan from informal lenders; and

c. Community justice actors on how to resolve the disputes equitably. 

Interested applicants should review the Request for Proposal:

 

·         RFP

All applications/proposals must be made using the templates provided in Annex 2 and 3. Applicants are provided with two templates to complete:

 

·         Annex 2: Supplier Response - proposal

·         Annex 3: Pricing Approach/Financial proposal 

In addition, applicants are encouraged to read the terms and conditions of the contract in Annex 1.

Please note that the proposals must be submitted electronically to: Bawk.Nan@britishcoucil.org with cc to myjustice@mm.britishcouncil.org by 2300hrs Yangon time on 30th September 2020. You may seek clarifications on the RFP by 18th September 2020 by 2300hrs Yangon time on the same email as above.