UNDP Moldova: Finance and Administrative Assistant (short-term) - Addressing the impacts of energy crisis and initiating solutions toward energy security and addressing energy poverty Programme/FPI (EU-funded)

Background

Starting with October 2021, Moldova is facing a significant increase of gas prices as a consequence both of very tight global energy markets and a recently amended contract with Gazprom Moldova gas supplier. During the winter season 2021-2022, Moldova purchased its gas at prices about three or four times higher than in previous years which represented about $770/1000 cubic meters in October, $450/1000 cubic meters in November and December and $650/1000 cubic meters in January 2022. The prices are highly dependent of international gas market fluctuations which puts Moldovan Government in the situation to quickly react in case of unforeseen excessive price increases. This has put significant pressures on Moldova’s public finances and on the ability of the most vulnerable citizens to afford gas throughout the winter. The situation is becoming more complex as the Gazprom applies a rigid approach in terms of contractual deadlines for payments of advances, which has not been the case ever before.

In response to this energy crisis, the Government of Moldova introduced a State of Emergency on October 22, 2021 and January 20, 2022 and has prepared an urgent response to strengthen the social protection system’s ability to respond to increased energy tariffs. The Moldovan Government response is to ensure compensations measures for heating of all population in the proportion of 67% (from tariff increase) in December 2021 to 80% in January 2022.

Given the increase of gas tariffs will lead to subsequent increases of the electricity prices, the entire national economy and population will be affected. In this circumstances, Moldovan Government is looking to diversifying gas and electricity supply, to strengthen its energy security and enabling a transparent, fully open and well-functioning energy market.

For a country in which nearly two thirds of the population lived on less than $10/day before the pandemic began, where the expenditure on food and energy absorbs the vast majority of vulnerable household incomes, and where the vulnerable households generate the lion’s share of its electricity from gas, the current energy price increase has already shown significant implications. Energy poverty is to deepen, particularly for the poor households that are having to face a three to four- fold increase in energy prices (for gas and electricity) during the 2021-2022 heating season and beyond.

Combined with the country’s aggravated context by the COVID-19 pandemic (5th COVID19 wave as the Omicron variant outbreaks) and on-going macroeconomic social distress, the energy shocks also pose major risks to the Government’s reform program, which seeks to strengthen Moldova’s alignment with European and global good governance practices and is central to Moldova’s hopes for achieving the SDGs. The current geopolitical situation brings additional urgency to pursue these actions.

The acute gas supply crisis in Moldova has also been subject of discussions within the Moldova-EU Association Council meeting on October 28, 2021. The EU and Moldova stressed the importance of resilience against any potential efforts by third parties to use energy as a geopolitical lever. The Association Council recalled the importance of continued energy market reform to strengthen competition and transparency in this sector. The EU has urged Moldova to ensure that the energy sector reform demonstrates full respect of the Energy Community acquis and is in line with the EU Third Energy Package. The EU side confirmed its support to the objective of Moldova to synchronize its electricity network with the Continental European Network (CEN), an important step towards the integration into the EU energy system and market.

Under these circumstances the Government of Moldova will be assisted to tackle the current energy crisis and energy poverty, and addressing prioritized systemic elements in the energy sector to cope with potential future energy crisis. In partnership with EU, UNDP Moldova will therefore, support the Government of Moldova:
• To tackle the current energy crisis and energy poverty, and addressing prioritized systemic elements in the energy sector to cope with potential future energy crisis
• To support the Government of Moldova in building its capacities towards strengthening the national energy security, as well as in improving the legal and regulatory framework and operationalizing specific rapid large-scale interventions to tackle energy poverty and support most vulnerable and affected groups of population and businesses.

The Project duration is envisaged between 2022- 2023 with support from Foreign Policy Instrument (herewith FPI) of EU.

Duties and Responsibilities

The Finance and Administrative Assistant in close cooperation with the project team, under the direct guidance and supervision of the Finance Coordinator and Programme Manager, will ensure the provision of financial and administrative services of the highest quality and standards to the project team, UNDP Country office, as well as national counterparts and clients. More specifically:

Administrative management:
• Pro-actively contribute to day-to-day programme implementation and ensure conformity to expected results and programme work-plans;
• Provide support to international consultants in the implementation of their tasks for the achievement of Programme results (communication, contracts, agenda, visas, hotel reservations, etc) and coordinate short-term consultants;
• Maintain records on all Programme personnel/national consultants and their respective status (contracts, ToRs, time and attendance – if appropriate, etc.) in accordance with accepted policies and procedures;
• Make pertinent logistical arrangements for the prompt and effective implementation of the programme activities;
• Draft minutes of Programme Board and other programme related meetings;
• Assume responsibility for administrative matters of a more general nature, such as registry and maintenance of programme files and records;
• Prepare Travel Authorizations and F10 claims for programme staff and consultants;
• Arrange and coordinate translation services/programmes;
• Arrange external and internal meetings (including the meetings of the Programme Board, pre-bidding conferences, launching events, workshops, interviews, as well as other relevant meetings etc.).

Financial management:
• Assistance to Finance Coordinator in preparation of all types of vouchers PO/non-PO vouchers, etc.;
• Full compliance of financial processes and financial records with UN/UNDP rules, regulations, policies and strategies.
• Proper control of the supporting documents for payments and follow up with the Finance unit, vendors on any issues related to the payments;
• Preparation of overall confirmation letters (VAT, quarantee letters, etc);
• Contribute to preparation of recurring reports as scheduled and special reports as required for budget preparations and audit;
• Verify vendor’s information in Atlas and submit requests for vendor updates;
• Assist international advisors and national consultants on all aspects of allowances, travel claims and other financial matters and calculate payments due for claims and services;
• Undertake other financial and administrative tasks on an ad hoc basis.
Key Results:
The key results have a direct impact on the overall successful achievement of the Programme objectives. Accurate analysis and presentation of information enhances UNDP’s position as a strong development partner. The information provided facilitates decision-making of the Programme Board, the Beneficiary and UNDP management.

Institutional Arrangement

Direct supervisor: Finance Coordinator.
Under the guidance and direct supervision of the Finance Coordinator and Programme Manager, the incumbent contributes to an effective and efficient implementation of programme objectives through a range of actions contributing to the design, planning, management and monitoring of activities. The Finance and Administrative Assistant applies and promotes the principles of results-based management (RBM), as well as a client-oriented approach consistent with UNDP rules and regulations.

The Finance and Administrative Assistant works in close collaboration with the Project team as well as the team in the Country Office (CO) for effective achievement of results, anticipating and contributing to resolving complex programme/project-related issues and information delivery. The incumbent is expected to exercise full compliance with UNDP programming, financial, procurement and administrative rules, regulations, policies and strategies, as well as implementation of the effective internal control systems.

Competencies

Core
Achieve Results: LEVEL 1: Plans and monitors own work, pays attention to details, delivers quality work by deadline

Think Innovatively: LEVEL 1: Open to creative ideas/known risks, is pragmatic problem solver, makes improvements

Learn Continuously: LEVEL 1: Open minded and curious, shares knowledge, learns from mistakes, asks for feedback

Adapt with Agility: LEVEL 1: Adapts to change, constructively handles ambiguity/uncertainty, is flexible

Act with Determination: LEVEL 1: Shows drive and motivation, able to deliver calmly in face of adversity, confident

Engage and Partner: LEVEL 1: Demonstrates compassion/understanding towards others, forms positive relationships

Enable Diversity and Inclusion: LEVEL 1: Appreciate/respect differences, aware of unconscious bias, confront discrimination

Cross-Functional & Technical competencies
Thematic Area Name Definition
Business Management Results-based Management Ability to manage programmes and projects with a focus at improved performance and demonstrable results
Business Management Working with Evidence and Data Ability to inspect, cleanse, transform and model data with the goal of discovering useful information, informing conclusions and supporting decision-making
Administration & Operations Registry & correspondence management Ability to collect, register, maintain and deliver mail and UNDP pouch; ability to manage archives
Administration & Operations Events management (including retreats, trainings and meetings) Ability to manage events, including venue identification, accommodation, logistics, catering, transportation, and cash disbursements, etc
Administration & Operations Travel contract management Knowledge of policy and procedures related to contract management, incl. oversight of the Long Term Agreement (LTA) with the Travel Management Services (TMS) provider; UN airline agreement management covering all major and rail providers; ability to negotiate airline discounts
Finance Budget management Ability to support budgetary aspects of work planning process, drawing and management of team budgets
Finance Accounting (General) Knowledge of accounting concepts, principles, frameworks, standards, regulations, policies and trends, and ability to apply this to strategic and/or practical situations

Required Skills and Experience

Min. Education requirements
• Secondary Education.
• University Degree in economics, finance, accounting, law, public administration or another related field would be desired.

Min. years of relevant work experience
• At least five (5) years (with Secondary Education) or two (2) years of experience in administrative work, accounting/finance, economics, experience in development assistance or related work for a donor organization, consulting company, or NGO is required.
• Previous experience with EC/UNDP is a strong advantage.
• Experience in the usage of computers and office software packages (MS Word, Excel, etc.) and advance knowledge of spreadsheet and database packages, experience in handling web-based management systems.

Required skills
• Displays cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality, age sensitivity and adaptability;
• Treats peers fairly by maintaining consistent values, inspiring trust and confidence through personal credibility;
• Accepts responsibility and accountability for the quality of the outcome of his/her decisions.
• Ability to handle multiple tasks simultaneously and ability to prioritize.

Desired skills in addition to the competencies covered in the Competencies section
• Continues to seek new and improved methods and systems for accomplishing the work of the unit
• Ability to communicate effectively, both orally and in writing, is required to obtain, evaluate and interpret factual data and to prepare accurate and complete reports and other documents.
• Adapts flexibly to changing situations, overcomes obstacles and recovers quickly from set-backs
• Focuses on result for the client and responds positively to feedback;
• Ability to achieve results and meet strict deadlines in an effective manne
• Consistently approaches work with energy and a positive, constructive attitude

Required Language(s)
• Fluency in oral and written English, Romanian and Russian.
• Knowledge of one or more minority languages relevant for Moldova, including Romani, Gagauzian, Bulgarian, Ukrainian and sign language, is an asset.

The following documents shall be required from the applicants:

Personal CV or P11, indicating all past positions held and their main underlying functions, their durations (month/year), the qualifications, as well as the contact details (email and telephone number) of the Candidate, and at least three (3) the most recent professional references of previous supervisors. References may also include peers.
A cover letter (maximum length: 1 page) indicating why the candidate considers him-/herself to be suitable for the position.
Managers may ask (ad hoc) for any other materials relevant to pre-assessing the relevance of their experience, such as reports, presentations, publications, campaigns or other materials.

This is a local position, therefore only citizens of the Republic of Moldova or others legally authorized to work in the country are eligible to apply.

UNDP is committed to gender equality in its mandate and its staff, and equal opportunities for people with disabilities. Well qualified candidates, particularly women and people with disabilities are especially encouraged to apply.

Applications should be submitted on line and include fully completed Personal History Form (P11) or CV/resume.
Please note that only applicants who are short-listed will be contacted.

 

Vacancy End Date: 5 July 2022

To apply please address the link: https://bit.ly/3NwFsuB