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Regional Cassava Processing and Marketing InitiativeFIRST REGIONAL MEETING OF IFAD ROOTS & TUBERS PROJECTS14-16 November 2007Hotel Somatel - Douala, Cameroon
Market Information – Concepts & Service Providers in WCAContent • Introduction - Market Information Services (MIS) • MIS components – how do MIS function ? • MIS Functions - why market information ? • Interactive MIS through ICT integration • Constraints of MIS in WCA • MI initiatives and service providers in the WCA region • RESIMAO/ WAMIS – network of public MIS • Mistowa – strengthening MIS and organizational capacity • Busylab’s TradeNet.biz – private MI platform • Manobi – purely private MIservices • A communication & trade network in Burkina Faso –alternative to classic MIS ? • Towards a best practice – key challenges of sustainable MIS
How do MIS function ? Processes Data collection & transmission Data processing Data analysis Dissemination
Market Information: What is it good for ? What is it good for ? “transparency” helps: • Public institutions: • Planning & policy • Chain operators • Improving business planning and decision making - more efficient investment of resources • Improving procurement of input & equipment • Improving produce marketing: • Increasing bargaining power • Reducing transaction costs by decreasing the market risks
Internet Platform/ Data base Private market actors Private market actors New ICT: Interactive Bids & offers Classic: one-way Market Info ICT in Market Information Services Classic MI System Data
MIS in WCA – major constraints Information content: • Data quality: • Inconsistent: low reliability • Lack of standards in quality, weights & measures, collection methods • Often limited to prices, excluding direct bids & offers transport availability and costs Information accessibility: • Dissemination often inappropriate - information is often obsolete
RESIMAO/ WAMIS(West African Market Information Network) • Network of public MIS of 9 ECOWAS-states, but generally open to any MIS • Initiatedin 2005, main function: regional MI online platform Clients: • Mainly public institutions (planning, policy, science), • Private actors Services: • Online data base: MIS operators upload data and manage it through web • Information dissemination: • Print media (quarterly bulletins) • Information platform: web site, email, sms-alerts
Resimao – network of public MIS • Price information: • Historical data/graphs • Different market levels • Different currencies • Other Information: • Stock, yields • imports/exports, cultivated land • Population, • climatic: precipitation • Missing: • directories • trade information: offers, bids
MISTOWA – strengthening MIS and organisational capacity • Mistowa implemented by the International Center for Soil Fertility and Agricultural development (IFDC) • Overall goal: facilitate the trade of agricultural products in West Africa (ECOWAS) • Key elements of Mistowa’s strategies: • Working through organizations (PO’s & TO’s) • Supporting and linking private & public MIS by Integrating new Information & communication technology (ICT)
MISTOWA-Agro Business Information Points (ABIP) Functions Potential Operators Associations: (TO‘s, PO‘s assisted by MISTOWA) Internet Cafe‘s/ Business Shops (Out-contracting) Public Bodies (MIS) Base for Data collection & transmission Info & Marketing Point Info dissemination: Training & advice Marketing of MI-services ABIP
TradeNet.Biz - private MI platform • TradeNetstarted in 2005 • Platform is used by MIS in 10 West African countries & Mozambique, Uganda, Honduras Services: • Infrastructure and technical assistance fordata management & information dissemination no data collection • Online data base Data providers/ MIS upload and manage own data via internet • Information Dissemination via web site and mobile phones/ sms • Fees: initial charge of US$ 2,000, annual license fee of US$ 5,000,
Manobi- purely private MIservices • Private multi-media service provider based in Dakar/ Senegal • Operates MIS in Senegal (since 2003) and South Africa (since 2006) • Whole range of MI services: data collection, database management analysis, dissemination no collaboration with public MIS Services • Web based information platform • Information is accessible through account • Services via mobile phones • Online accounts via mobile phone through WAP technology • Bookkeeper software in mobile phones automatic M&Eof beneficiaries’ economies emphasis on individual phones • Information adapted to illiteracy: cartoon-style icons & voice system • Beneficiaries consulted by business agents • Promotion and organization of collective sales
Mobile Phone Operator Villages Prof. Organizations The Manobi-Concept Manobi Contract Data Provider & Mobile Operator supervision Markets Data Collectors Traders
GSM-based trade-communication network in Burkina Faso Initiated by the association “COMITE INTERPROFESSIONELDES CEREALES DU BURKINA” (CIC-B) in 2005: • GSM-based trade-communication network: Direct communication among currently 250 members, producers & traders, linked via mobile phone network: • Access for a monthly flat rate of 5 EU members can call each other free of charge • Members directory (updated and distributed monthly) • Organization of collective sales and related logistics (storage, transport)
Assessment of comparative Strengths, weaknesses & risks Strenghts • Substantial regional Network already in place - Experience throughout the region – Resimao and TradeNet • Strengthening of organizational capacity – Mistowa concept emphasizes integration of Organizations • Software - Manobi Software with useful features to overcome illiteracy-related constraints • Sustainability: The system in Burkina Faso is simple and cost-effective
Comparative Strengths, weaknesses & risks Weaknesses & risks • Risk of smallholders marginalisation in Burkina-System: • Without price reference of an independent MIS for less informed • Risk of price agreements/ alliances among strong actors • Resimao/ Tradenet: typical problems of public MIS: deficiencies in service quality and stability • Reach of the poor and secluded areas: Manobi system doesn’t include radio dissemination: services limited to mobile phone network. Coverage in many WCA countries still low.
GSM coverage – still a limiting factor MTN in Nigeria TELECEL in Benin
key challenges How to reach sustainability of MI services ?: • The dependency on public resources leads often todysfunctions • Potential cost recovery through service charges limited because beneficiaries have little resources to pay for the services ! • How to provide needs-oriented quality services with minimum costs ? How to customize services to immediate needs ? • How can MIS be efficiently organized ? Can public services be efficient ? Can private services be profitable ? Can PPP’s provide a solution ? How to reach the beneficiaries ?: • How can the poorest with little surplus benefit from MI services? Do they need support for collective sales? • How to integrate the remote areas outside GSM networks ? Can rural radios be used to enable not only 1way information but trade communication?
Merci ! Thank you !