Water Regulatory and Financing Specialist

Asian Development Bank (ADB)
Position Type: 
Organization Type: 
International Organization
Experience Level: 
Senior (10+ Years)
Degree Required: 
Advanced Degree (Master's or JD)


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Objective and Purpose of the Assignment


The Timor-Leste Strategic Development Plan (SDP) 2011–2030 and SDG 6 mention that access to safe
drinking water and sanitation infrastructures is vital for the economic and social development of Timor-
Leste. Many benefits will rise from investments in water supply and sanitation sector, namely in health,
education, economic, private sector development and tourism among others.

To reach the SDP targets and SDG 6, the Government of Timor-Leste wishes to establish a public utility
to provide water supply and sanitation services to the country. On the 1st April 2020, the Government
through the Council of Ministers (CoM) has approved the Decree Law to transfer the roles and
responsibilities from the Directorate General for Water and Sanitation (DGAS) and its National
Directorates to the newly established public water utility named “Bee Timor-Leste”. The CoM also
approved another Decree Law to establish the water supply and sanitation Regulatory Authority as Public

To help with the preparation of the transition process, the Ministry of Public Works (MPW) set-up an
installation committee. It is expected that in 2021, the public water utility can start its function for
the provision of water supply and sanitation services. The public water utility is expected to assume
management of all municipal water supply systems as it rolls out its capital works program. It will be
focusing on the municipal capitals and the largest cities with the aim of providing a high-quality and
efficient service. To achieve high-quality and efficient service, it is necessary that the Government
adopts an optimal organization with an efficient internal structure with the appropriate skills,
including management, human resources, financial and administration, operation and maintenance,
procurement, information management system, regulation, etc.

Scope of Work


The Water Regulatory and Financing Specialist is responsible for (i) facilitating the transition of DGAS
to a financially self-sustaining public water utility by assisting in the development of a pricing model
and matching customer code; (ii) assisting Bee Timor-Leste Financial Manager establishing a financial
management system, including identifying and recommend a financial management software and formulating
financial management regulations and standard operating procedures; (iii) review jointly with the
consultant team (leader) the existing regulations, policy, institutional structure and governance in the
water supply sector, identify gaps and weaknesses, and prepare a gap assessment report and five year
roadmap to address those shortcoming; and (iv) review and analyze the options for sustainable and
responsible involvement of the private sector to support the development of the countries water supply
sector. The Water Regulatory and Financing Specialist is to advise on the asset valuations and
depreciation, operating expenses, managing of Government fees and charges, live cycle cost analysis,
revenue production and income generation (fees/tariffs/charges). The Water Regulatory and Financing
Specialist is also to lead the discussion on hardship allowances, block tariffs and connection and other
charges. The Water Regulatory and Financing Specialist is expected to closely liaise with Government
policy makers, DGAS Executives, the installation committee, the administrative council and executive
committee of Bee Timor-Leste and the consultant team.

Detailed Tasks and/or Expected Output


The Water Regulatory and Financing Specialist is required to advise Government, DGAS, the installation
committee, the administrative council and executive committee of Bee Timor-Leste on (i) the pricing of
water utility services using contemporary water utility practices; (ii) establishment of a financial
management system, including rules, regulations and standard operating procedures for financial
management; and (iii) joint development of a feasible and locally adapted five year roadmap to a
regulatory, institutional and policy framework for the water supply sector. The pricing formula is to
reflect current social structures and customer affordability, which shall also be taken up in the
regulatory and policy framework. The Water Regulatory and Financing Specialist responsibilities will
include the following:
i) Attend the site and become familiar with Timor-Leste water supply and sanitation legislation,
regulations, institutions, policies and practices, current financing modalities and financial
performance, and the results from previous studies.
ii) Work with the relevant Government department officers, DGAS executives and the installation
committee to develop a sustainable pricing and billing model which reflects the financial and social
aspirations of the Government.
iii) Having regard for the service delivery performance measures, targets, and the proposed investment
plan, apply the pricing model and present a selection of pricing and billing options. Considering local
poverty indicators, social- and socioeconomic factors, affordability and willingness-to-pay, and other
relevant socioeconomic factors, analyse the different options and identify the most feasible option(s)
for recommendation and discussion with the government.
iv) Assisting Bee Timor-Leste in establishing financial management system, including identifying,
procuring and installation of financial management system.
v) Develop rules, regulation and standard operating procedure for Bee Timor-Leste financial management.
vi) Document the pricing process and the outcomes of the discussions with the government by preparing a
financial regulations and pricing handbook and train relevant Government officers, DGAS personnel and
the installation committee in its use.
vii) Develop and present a transition plan to move from the current pricing regimen to the new pricing
viii) The new pricing regiment must reflect full cost recovery where full cost means the sum of
operating expenses, return of capital, return of capital and any Government charges and levies. It shall
also include provisions for marginalized groups (e.g. social tariffs for disabled people, female headed
households, etc.) and informal settlements. Other pricing strategies are not to be considered (cost
plus, benchmarking, value-based, skimming and penetration). Assets and inventory are to be costed at
replacement value.
ix) Assess gaps and/or weaknesses in the existing water supply policy and regulations, governance and
institutional setup and co-prepare a gap assessment report together with the consultant team (leader)
identifying these shortcomings. Provide support and guidance to the government through the formulation
of a five-year roadmap for a regulatory, institutional and policy development of the water supply
sector, with inputs from the consultant team.
x) Assess and analyse the current role, the rules and regulations, and existing practice of the private
sector for water supply. Identify the possible role of and options for stronger involvement of the
private sector to sustainably support and improve the performance of the water sector in the country and
discuss with the government the approach towards controlled and responsible private sector involvement.

Minimum Qualification Requirements


The Water Regulatory and Financing Specialist should have: (i) tertiary bachelor and master degree in
economics, engineering or a relevant field; (ii) at least 30 years’ experience in the water industry
with 15 years in senior executive positions; (iii) at least 10 years in a water utility pricing and
regulations role; (iv) at least 5 years in a Government regulating body; (v) proficiency in English,
proficiency in Portuguese and/or Tetum is an asset; (vi) motivation and willingness to work directly
with the Government, DGAS and the public water utility installation committee; and (vii) willingness to
undertake site visit(s) to and within Timor-Leste fulfilling all the Government health requirements for
COVID-19 prevention and when the quarantine measures within the country have been lifted and when air
travel is permitted at travel origin, transit, and destination.