Abt Associates Technical Specialist 12 / Task 3 Investment Mobilization Lead (Renewable Energy) - Thailand, CPA in Thailand

Organization Overview

The International Economic Growth Division manages projects that are pioneering new approaches to agriculture, food security, climate change, and competitiveness—as well as monitoring and evaluating projects within these sectors. We work throughout Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East for chiefly governmental clients, including the US Agency for International Development (USAID), the Millennium Challenge Corporation, the Inter-American Development Bank, the Asian Development Bank, the World Bank and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.


Abt Associates, a global leader in technical assistance, program implementation and international development, seeks qualified individuals to fulfill the position of Investment Mobilization Lead (Task 3 Lead) for the USAID Clean Power Asia program, reporting to the Chief of Party. The purpose of USAID Clean Power Asia is to accelerate the regional transition to high performing, low carbon power sector. The Activity will assist the governments of the Lower Mekong and other developing countries in Asia in energy planning and help establish effective policy, regulatory, and technical environment for low-emissions growth in the power sector, while simultaneously attracting public- and private-sector investment in Renewable Energy (RE) development. USAID Clean Power Asia is focused on the following resources: solar, wind, small hydro (<15 MW), and biomass residues. The program s activities are focused on the four Lower Mekong countries of Cambodia, Lao PDR, Thailand and Vietnam, but also includes activities on the ASEAN regional level.

  • The Investment Mobilization Lead position is recruiting candidates under a local hire designation, meaning neither allowances nor relocation benefits are available.
  • The successful candidate will be expected to be on site in Bangkok to begin work within two (2) weeks of USAID approval of the candidate.
  • While local hire, there are no nationality/residence requirements. Thai nationals and other nationals of the Lower Mekong countries are strongly encouraged to apply.
  • The full-time position is based in Bangkok and is classified at the senior management level with supervisory responsibilities for a team of three to five staff and intermittent consultants. Additional supervisory responsibilities include providing technical direction and programmatic oversight to subcontractors.
  • The position is designated Key Personnel under the governing USAID contract; such designation requires the selected candidate to devote 100% level of effort to the contract for the remaining term of the contract. Further, any offer of employment is subject to USAID approval.

Key Roles and Responsibilities

Although renewable energy investments offer a range of promising new business opportunities, project developers have faced formidable financial and regulatory challenges. In the Lower Mekong region in particular, renewable energy projects receive less interest than traditional capital investments, and technologies and risk considerations are often entirely new to the investor community. At the same time, barriers exist for banks and financial institutions to effectively engage and invest in renewable energy.

To accelerate mobilization of private and public sector investment, the Investment Mobilization Lead (Task 3 Lead) will manage support for project developers, financial institutions, investors, and others, in the deployment of grid-connected renewable energy generation. Support for the enabling environment to facilitate investment in renewable power plant installations is required, along with the development of financing mechanisms, and assistance in streamlining the financing approval process for renewable energy projects, defined for CPA as solar PV, wind, small hydro (run of river between 1-15 MW) and biomass (from agricultural residue) technologies.

USAID’s Clean Power Asia is designed to facilitate at least $750 M in investment for grid-connected renewable energy, financial closure of at least 500 MW of grid-connected renewable generation, and at least 3.5 million metric tons of CO2e emissions reduced or avoided from projects facilitated to reach commercial operation.

Although solar energy and other renewable energy projects in the region offer promise, closing deals and implementing projects remains difficult, due to three inter-connected and self-reinforcing obstacles:

  • Policy and financial investment barriers and risks
  • Lack of project bankability
  • Lack of affordable, sustainable and appropriately-termed financing

Addressing all three on a regional and country-specific basis is needed to scale up sustainable grid-connected renewable energy. CPA will focus on three lines of activities concurrently:

  • De-risking investments and channeling public spending
  • Improving bankability of projects
  • Increasing affordable and appropriately-termed financing (primary and secondary)

A. Design and Lead Technical Assistance and Capacity-Building activities targeting large-scale investment for grid connected renewable energy reaching financial closure resulting in CO2e emissions reduced or avoided.

  1. Improve bankability of RE investments by:
  • De-risking RE investments to improve project bankability through credit enhancement and other tools;
  • Screening a pool of projects to determine investment readiness;
  • Assessing risks and work with PFAN Asia to provide coaching and guidance to investors on reducing risks;
  • Assisting developers in identifying the need for partial risk guarantees (PRGs) or other de-risking tools to increase returns or reduce costs to scale up RE investment;
  • Working with government entities to prioritize or otherwise identify projects to nominate for multi-lateral development bank (MDB) PRGs;
  • Using various frameworks and tools to analyze additional potential government interventions to reduce risks in the enabling environment;
  • Promoting standardization of projects and financing including standardized power purchase agreements (PPAs), contracts, etc.; and
  • Working with Associations or other business membership organizations to identify and address policy and regulatory barriers to investment through analyses and assessments and convening fora to develop action plans to address barriers.
  • Increase affordable and appropriately terms financing by working with banks and other financial institutions to:

  • Develop and use financial mechanisms, and products;

  • Develop and adopt business models (such as leasing) for promoting grid-connected renewable energy projects;
  • Develop standardized loan agreements;
  • Determine profitability and viability of RE lending; and
  • Adopt standardized templates and evaluation practices for financing RE.
  • As required, scale up available equity funding for RE projects by:

  • Pooling loans and attracting equity to draw in additional investment;

  • Convening a standardization for securitization process for financing grid-tied renewable energy projects (to develop standard, tradeable instruments); and
  • Increasing access to funding from capital markets, including through issuance of bonds.
  • Transaction advisory support to individual developers and groups of developers: Provide advisory services, technical assistance and capacity building to key players in the RE market, including but not limited to project developers, investors, financial institutions and equity investment vehicles to:

  • Increase their renewable energy portfolios;

  • Endorse diverse project financing mechanisms for RE projects; and
  • Build their capacity to conduct proper assessments of RE projects/programs.

B. Program and Staff Management Responsibilities

  1. Annual work planning:
  • Lead annual Work Planning for Activities under Task 3: Renewable energy investment mobilization, including the design, prioritization, and selection of key activities included in annual workplan, leading the review and revision of draft work plans to be submitted to USAID and drafting of the subsequent annual work plans throughout the duration of the contract
  • Ensure the work plan activities are/will be designed to achieve the goals and objectives of the project, including the annual targets for facilitating investment in grid-connected renewable energy projects and bringing projects to financial closure.
  1. Identify and define needs for staffing, individual consultants and subcontractors to implement Task 3 activities:
  • Review and revise draft staff job descriptions (JDs) or scopes of work (SOWs) for additional full or part-time staff or individual consultants to supplement the Task 3 Lead and work under the direction of the USAID Clean Power Asia Chief of Party (COP) to finalize the JDs/SOWs. Work with administrative staff to advertise the positions, participate with the COP and/or other designated team leader and assigned staff to interview and evaluate candidates for staff and consultant positions.
  • Determine technical and programmatic needs for subcontractors to implement specific scopes of work on a fixed term, fixed deliverables, and fixed price basis.
  • Manage the work of the Task 3 staff, individual consultants and subcontractors to implement the tasks in the work plan and achieve the objectives outlined in the work plan including targets for indicators outlined in the monitoring and evaluation plan.
  • Work closely with the Task 1- Power Sector Planning Lead and Task 2- Renewable Energy Smart Incentives and Policy Support Lead to ensure tasks are well coordinated and support common objectives.
  • Cooperate with country coordinators in Cambodia, Lao and Vietnam, as well as any country representatives that may be hired in other ASEAN countries to design and implement activities designed to achieve the program objectives.

Preferred Skills / Prerequisites (candidates not meeting these requirements will NOT be considered)

  • Education

  • A Master’s degree and 3-5 year’s directly relevant experience; or a Bachelor’s degree and 5-7 years directly relevant experience in areas such as business, engineering, finance, accounting, or law.

  • Proven contacts and relationships (private sector, public/government, finance and investment, climate change/green growth organizations) that can be tapped to support the objectives of the position.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of the complexities of the RE marketplace and value chain, to include finance and investment, the regulatory environment, and trends—in the Lower Mekong countries and Southeast Asia.
  • Experience

  • Minimum 3-5 years of experience desired in power and infrastructure-related finance, preferably including renewable energy. Preference for experience gained in investment banking, private equity, commercial banking, public finance institution, law firm, or a globally recognized consulting firm or energy firm.

  • Fluency in speaking, reading and writing English required.

Desired Qualifications (candidates meeting required qualifications will be viewed preferentially if they have one or more of these additionally desired qualifications)

  • Experience managing different aspects of Customer Relations Management (CRM) software, preferably insightly©
  • Excellent network of contacts in relevant RE investment/finance sectors in Thailand, Lao PDR, Vietnam and Cambodia.
  • Experience working with or on a USAID funded program or other international donor program.
  • A proven track-record of successfully bringing projects from idea/concept to implementation.
  • Demonstrated success utilizing non-traditional forms of finance to promote project development and realization, such as Green Bonds or Crowdfunding.
  • Additional fluency in one or more of the following languages: Vietnamese, Thai, Khmer, and/or Lao.

Relevant Professional Skills (candidates should be able to adequately explain their strengths and weaknesses with regard to the following skills)

  • Strong consulting, management and organization skills.
  • Strong oral and written communication skills.
  • Highly self-motivated and adaptable to learning and understanding new things.
  • Ability to effectively prioritize and manage multiple tasks to meet critical deadlines.
  • Ability to work both independently and in a team-oriented, collaborative environments.
  • Ability to build and maintain relationships with development agencies, non-governmental organizations, and relevant private sector players.
  • Ability to produce quality work products with attention to detail.

Application Procedure

Interested candidates may express their interest by emailing recruitment@usaidcleanpowerasia.com

referencing “Task 3 Lead ” in the subject line. Deadline for applications is February 15, 2018. Applications received after this date will not be considered.

To be considered for the position, your emailed application MUST INCLUDE the following information; failure to provide this information will result in your application being removed from consideration.

  1. A written expression of interest summarizing your qualifications for the position. The expression of interestMUST ADDRESS EACH OF THE REQUIRED QUALIFICATIONSor your application.
  2. CV clearly indicating work/consulting history and either daily consulting rate or annual compensation for each consultancy/position, stated in currency of payment .
  3. Preference will be given to nationals of the Lower Mekong countries and those with immediate availability. No allowances, including relocation, will be available to the successful candidate.
  4. Successful candidate is required to be available for the remaining term of the contract (through June 2021) and is expected to be available for work within 2 weeks of USAID approval of the candidate.

Additional Documentation

If a candidate is selected for an interview, the following documents will be required. While not required as part of the initial application, Abt appreciates candidates who chose to submit these documents as part of the application package:

  1. US Federal Form 1420 (EBD) https://www.usaid.gov/forms/aid-1420-17
  2. Proof of Education/Degree attained (transcript or diploma)
  3. Proof of annual salary or daily consulting rate as stated in the EBD (acceptable forms include employment agreement, pay stubs, employer verification letter).

Due to the volume of anticipated applicants, only candidates selected for an interview will be contacted.

Interviews will be scheduled as warranted and may be conducted in person or via electronic means.

Abt Associates is doing business as Abt Associates Thailand, registered with the Thailand Department of Commerce. Abt Associates is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer committed to fostering a diverse workforce.


Minimum Qualifications

(10+) years of experience and a bachelor degree OR the equivalent combination of education and experience.

Abt Associates is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity employer committed to fostering a diverse workforce. Abt Associates provides market-competitive salaries and comprehensive employee benefits.

As an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer, Abt Associates is committed to fostering a diverse, multicultural work environment where our employees respect one another and share a commitment to our firm's values, mission, and strategies. Abt Associates Inc. provides equal employment to all participants and employees without regard to age, race, color, sex, creed, citizenship status, religion, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, national origin, disability, marital status, or veteran status.