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Author: Juliane Weymann

JOB AD: Specialist for Business Development and Negotiation Support at the CONNEX Support Unit Secretariat

For our team in Berlin we are looking for a Specialist (m/w) for Business Development and Negotiation Support in CONNEX Support Unit (managed by GIZ).

The CONNEX Support Unit (www.connex-unit.org) was created in January 2017 to provide assistance to governments of developing countries in negotiating, re-negotiating or implementing large-scale, complex investment contracts. GIZ (German International Cooperation – Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit) was commissioned to manage the CONNEX Support Unit Secretariat.

With us you have the opportunity to join a motivated and dynamic team and to help build a new global initiative. We are looking for networkers with creativity and interest in new topics in development cooperation!

Are you interested? Check here for more info and apply online.

We are excited to receive your application in English. Assignment period is from as soon as possible until August 2020. Application deadline is March 23, 2018.

Joint CONNEX and ALSF initiative in Rwanda

In a collaborative effort, the African Legal Support Facility (ALSF) and the CONNEX Support Unit organised a measure aimed at strengthening corporate governance in the extractives sector, which was held on 14 and 15 November in Kigali, Rwanda. As the extractives sector has witnessed a sustained increase in equity participation by governments, there has been an emergent need for good governance and equitable benefits-sharing. The ALSF and the CONNEX Support Unit have partnered up in order to transfer relevant skills to members of Boards of Directors. The feedback was overwhelmingly positive: Participants agreed that the course was very informative and that it provided relevant knowledge and tools.

To read more about the training, please click here.



Vibrant discussions during recent CONNEX Negotiation Support Forum

On June 15, 2017, the CONNEX Multi-Stakeholder Negotiation Support Forum (NSF) took place in Paris as part of the 8th OECD Policy Dialogue on Natural Resource-based Development. More than 40 participants from government, private sector, civil society, academia and development organizations used the opportunity for cross-sectoral and open dialogue on key issues in the context of resource contracts.

Mr. Nooke and Mr. Touré, representing Minister Magassouba from Guinea, opened the NSF. Both of them thanked the OECD for hosting the NSF and all the participants for coming. They reminded on the substantial work the forum has done in the past and expressed the hope the debate will continue in the future.

First on the agenda was the further work on the Draft CONNEX Guiding Principles for Durable Extractive Contracts, which aims at supporting contracts which can withstand the test of time. This document has been in development for several months now and shall serve as a common reference to build mutual trust during contract negotiations, and structure extractive contracts for the long term. The exchange was very fruitful and despite some further need for clarification, good progress could be made. It is hoped that the principles can be soon be concluded. Participants appreciated the process facilitated by the OECD and pointed out the strong need for a guidance note which is sustainable and long-lasting.

The second session focused on the role of model contract in complex extractive contract negotiations. The facilitator Mr. Chamot, former Minister of Mining in Peru, had invited officials from Liberia, Mozambique and Tanzania to share their experience. The following discussion reaffirmed that model contracts can help to speed up negotiation and support governments to sustain their priorities, but that it is also very important that the model contract fits the context and has to be implemented afterwards.

The Negotiation Support Forum was concluded with a discussion on how non-binding international human rights, labour and environmental standards can be of use in negotiating large-scale extractive contracts between host governments and investors. The session was organized by the members of the CONNEX Support Unit Advisory Committee and facilitated by Dr. Sauvant, who coordinates the Advisory Committee. The vibrant debate confirmed the relevance and influence of those standards despite their non-binding status and there reference in contracts was recommended.

The Negotiation Support Forum reaffirmed once again the relevance of getting people together to share their perspective and experiences. The vibrant discussion and great participation showed the high interest from all sides.

If you want to know more about the NSF, please see here. The key outcomes of the 8th OECED Policy Dialogue, including the CONNEX Negotiation Support Forum, can be checked here.


CONNEX at the European Development Days 2017

These have been busy days for Brussels. More than 8,000 people from all over the world participated in the the 2017 European Development Days  on June 7 and 8, listened to great speeches, took parts in more than 120 sessions or strolled around the ‘Global Village’ –  the large exhibition with more than 80 instituitions, organiations and projects displaying their work. As part of this Global Village,  the CONNEX Support Unit was proud to introduce the possibilities of CONNEX Support to an highly interested audience in various innovative ways. More than 200 visitors from governments, private sectior, civil society, academia as well as development partner stopped at the stand to learn about CONNEX. The colorful and interactive CONNEX Contract Walk and CONNEX Quiz invited to test the newly aquired knowlegde and skills and encouraged vibrant discussions. Some lucky people even had the chance to chat with Mr. ‘CONNEX’  Nooke who is the German Chancellor’s Personal Representative for Africa in the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development´and has been a big CONNEX Supporter from the very beginning. The reaction and feedback of visitors after two eventufl days were clear: CONNEX is highly relevant, innovative and unique in its approach! More of this is needed.


CONNEX Support Unit at the European Development Days 2017

We are excited to annouce that the CONNEX Support Unit will showcase its work at the European Development Days (EDD) 2017 which will take place in Brussels, Belgium from June 7-8. We will be part of the EDD Global Village where organisations and initiatives from around the globe present successful and innovative projects. The Global Village is a key component of the event and will attract thousands of visitors. More information on our stand will be released soon.  Stay tuned for more info and check out the European Development Days Webpage.