Form Five Selection 2024

Consultancy at Forestry Development Trust July, 2021

Are you a qualified Engineered Wood Processing expert with passion for supporting the growth of local wood industry through provision of technical assistance?

Opportunity exists for an experienced wood processing expert to work in an incubation program whose objective is to facilitate and stimulate investments and improve market access and penetration for Tanzania wood products through the provision of technical support for local investors in the engineered wood products value chain.


About FDT:

The Forestry Development Trust (FDT) is an independent Tanzanian institution which was established in 2013 by the Gatsby Charitable Foundation (GCF) with Certificate of Incorporation No. 4743 under the Trustees Incorporation Act Cap. 318 R.E 2002. It has a Memorandum of Understanding with the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism. The Trust aims to transform the commercial forestry sector in Tanzania by facilitating changes at the sector level that will enhance and build competitiveness, inclusiveness, and resilience.

The Trust works with several actors including the central and local government, local and international partners, and all levels of commercial forestry tree growers (Large, medium and small). To implement its work effectively, Forestry Development Trust has four main departments being genetic resources, tree grower services, wood product markets and policy and institutions.


The Wood Products Markets department focuses on two interventions being Engineered Wood Products and Sawn Timber. The main objective of the EWP intervention is to catalyse investment in veneer, plywood processing and other products which will spur growth of the value chain and diversified wood products base through increased value addition.



The forest sector is one of the key economic sectors that could drive the Tanzania National Industrialization Agenda. It is the sector that has relatively great potential to promote both rural and urban industrialization; create decent employment for many Tanzanians; increase its contribution to gross domestic product (GDP) from the current 3.5%; increase both export earnings and fiscal revenues. This is because the sector has rich value chain activities which can reduce the spending of foreign currencies for imports and at the same time generate foreign currency from exports. Of significance is the Engineered Wood Products (EWPs) value chain, which has the capacity to greatly increase the economic contribution of


commercial forestry to the national economy. EWPs present a genuine opportunity to diversify forestry value chains given the growing domestic, regional, and global demand for products such as plywood, fibre boards, Medium Density Fibreboard (MDF), Cross-Laminate Timber (CLT), Glulam as well as block and finger jointed boards.


However, the Tanzania commercial forestry sector has, for many years, been dependent on a limited number of wood processing value chains, reducing economic gains including economic development, industrialization, employment creation and fiscal revenue generation. Whilst primary processing has been the core value addition activity, Tanzania is mainly dominated by conventional sawmilling which produces structural timber used in construction and transmission poles for electricity and telecommunication distribution. Other value addition options with huge economic potential including EWPs processing have not been fully explored as demonstrated by limited investments.


In the current state of investment into engineered wood products, there is minimum participation by local processors and investors. One major reason for low participation among local investors is limited access to technology and the required technical skills to operate EWP processing. Local investors who have invested in EWP factories manufacture only air- dried veneers for sale to in-country and foreign plywood manufacturers. The veneers produced are of inconsistent moisture content with higher thickness variation, subsequently impacting the quality of the end products. This limits the competitiveness of local veneers in the high-end export market. To address this challenge, reliable technical support and advisory services to these local investors is key to improving quality and increasing access to export lucrative export markets.


Forestry Development Trust (FDT) is seeking to identify and engage a pool of local and resident wood processing experts who will provide technical support and advisory services to local investors under a proposed EWP investment incubation program.


The Role:

FDT seeks to engage qualified experts on a consultancy basis and will link them with local EWP incubates in Iringa and Njombe regions for hands-on technical and advisory support. The proposed services will be provided directly to the selected EWP investors and their staff with consultation with FDT technical team and the technical oversight consultant. The expert will spend up to 90% of their time working with the investors and their operations in the field and only 10% with the FDT team for planning, periodic progress update and impact assessment.


The technical and business development advisory is expected to support local early-stage investors with advisory support critical for starting and running a commercially viable engineered wood processing business. The successful consultant will provide technical support to early stage incubates with the following key outputs and deliverables:


  • Technical Support: this will involve support provided by the expert to the beneficiaries on investment planning, technology identification, sourcing of right equipment, installation, configuration and commissioning, maintenance, operation system set up, production and management system, standard operating procedures, training of operators, and quality assurance and other relevant technical advice that shall necessarily be required.
  • Reporting: The technical expert will operate as an independent consultant directly supporting the investors but reporting to FDT’s Senior Manager-Markets and to the technical oversight consultant who will be providing guidance on regular basis. The consultant will be required to develop work schedules and agree with the supervisor prior to proceeding with S/he will then provide written reports after completion of any milestone activities and a summary of tasks completed monthly.


Required Qualifications:

The technical expert is required to possess the following qualifications:

  • Bachelors’ degree in wood industries, wood science/processing, mechanical engineering, Diploma graduate in the same field with qualified technical, hands-on experience presenting an undeniable technical expertise of at least 10 years will be considered for the role.
  • Working experience of more than 10 years in engineered wood processing factories as a production manager or equivalent technical and managerial role with responsibilities on operation, maintenance, production management, trouble shooting, quality assurance
  • Proven understanding of the dynamics of technology and its development, technical challenges, knowledge of technology suppliers, optimization, and efficiency
  • Ability to provide capacity building to the production teams as well as guidance to new investors to implement standard operating procedures for EWP
  • Knowledge of business and wood markets dynamics is an added advantage for
  • Willingness and commitment to establish an independent formal technical advisory business to provide on-going technical advice to the industry in the
  • Ability to work independently and under minimum


Selected consultants will be rewarded with competitive compensate for their time and effort invested in provision of technical assistance. Fees will be paid to cover periods on duty and in some cases will compensate for specific tasks completed by the consultant upon agreement.



If you are both qualified and interested in this role, please submit your full pack of application documents outlining your interest, qualifications and suitability for the role via email address, via FDT Postal Address, P. O Box 2, Iringa, or physically at FDT offices located at Plot. No. 20 Balozi Road, Gangilonga, Iringa. Deadline: Before 16:00 hours on 9th July 2021.

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