Investing in Infrastructure (3i)

Project number:                      237

Project name:                         Development of sample contract between bulk water supplier and retailers

Issued on:                               27 January 2021

Response closing date:         16 February 2021

Response closing time:         4.00pm

1. Background

This document is a Request for Proposals (RFP) detailing information sought from potential consulting firms or individual consultants that are able to develop a contract template that is suitable for bulk water sellers and retailers to enter into business with each other with appropriate and fair legal protections for both parties.

3i is seeking proposals from all suitable firms, both in Cambodia and internationally. Due to the nature of this activity, face to face meetings and consultations will be required. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, international travel will not be supported. International firms with a local presence in Cambodia (or a consortium of firms including international firms with a local partner) are encouraged to submit proposals.

2. Program summary

Investing in Infrastructure (3i) is a six year, nationwide, social investment program funded by the Australian Government and implemented by Palladium. The program has supported more than 90 private companies to establish and expand piped clean water infrastructure, electricity networks, and small scale solar in areas where operators would not have invested by themselves. At least one million Cambodians will get access to reliable electricity and piped clean water through the support from the program.

3i’s experiences provide an opportunity to inform and influence wider infrastructure policy in Cambodia by building on its lessons and insights into the institutional and policy framework gained through successful delivery of its work. 3i has been leveraging these experiences to provide relevant policy supports to government counterpart to improve business enabling environment for more and better infrastructure development.

3. Program Requirements

3.1. Project Background

At the request of the Royal Government of Cambodia’s (RGC) Ministry of Industry, Science, Technology and Innovation (MISTI), 3i is exploring bulk water business opportunities in Cambodia through implementation of a demonstration project. The objective of the project is to unlock investment opportunities in the piped water sector by introducing new business models and enabling larger scale investments to increase piped clean water coverage in Cambodia.

3i expects to support one wholesale and retail investment model to demonstrate the possibility of the model and gather lessons learnt to develop policy recommendations for MISTI. Various critical steps must be completed to enable the demonstration to proceed including establishing the required process for the demonstration and developing a contract template containing appropriate legal conditions to enable both a wholesaler and a retailer to enter the bulk water business deal.

The contract template will draw on Cambodia’s context with consideration of existing standard technical requirements, general practices in the field, rules and regulation, potential political influences, etc.

3.2. Desired outcomes

As a result of this project 3i will have:

  • A robust, easy to use, clear and relevant contract template with appropriate legal conditions to enable the wholesaler and retailer to enter the agreement.

3.3. Key tasks and activities

3i requires a firm or individual consultant to undertake the following activities:

  • Review existing relevant agreements between wholesale and retail entities in piped water and similar infrastructure, such as electricity, in Cambodia. Review relevant examples from other developing and developed countries.
  • Interview relevant stakeholders to determine the needs of both bulk water and retail water businesses. The contract template must have appropriate regard for Cambodia’s context with consideration of existing standard technical requirements, general practices in the field, rules and regulations, potential political influences, etc.
  • Develop a draft sample contract template that is suitable for bulk water sellers and retailers to enter into a deal with appropriate and fair legal conditions, based on the findings of consultations and stakeholder interviews.
  • Present the draft to potential key users including private sector and regulatory bodies and finalise the contract based on their feedback and recommendations.
  • Join consultation meetings with MISTI for recommendation and inputs.
  • Conduct (up to 2) presentations of the findings and the sample template for 3i and MISTI.


3.4. Deliverable outputs

  1. A contract template
  2. A presentation on the deliverables to 3i and MISTI

 3.5. Financial proposal

Potential suppliers are requested to present an overall proposal for activities. The fee proposal should be presented as a fixed price proposal for all work, to include any necessary costs for the supplier to carry out the work in the specified location.

In addition to the fixed cost price proposal, some reimbursable travel and incidental expenses within Cambodia (transport, accommodation, per diems) will be included in the contract in accordance with 3i established policies. Details will be provided to the successful supplier during contract award. These costs are not required to be included in the suppliers’ financial proposal.

All relevant assumptions should be detailed in writing in the Financial Proposal.

3.6. Payment terms:

Payment milestones will be negotiated with the successful supplier during contract award. Palladium standard 30-day payment terms apply to international subcontracts. Cambodian suppliers may be subject to alternative payment terms. All suppliers will be required to issue a correctly rendered Tax Invoice based on completion of project milestones, to the satisfaction of 3i.

 3.7. Contract duration:

This activity is to be conducted between March and June 2021.

3.8. Supplier and team profile

We expect that the supplier selected to undertake this project will have as a minimum all of the following capabilities:

  1. The potential firms or individual consultants must have a minimum of ten (10) years of experience on providing legal and regulatory advice to national and international bodies.
  2. Significant water policy consulting experience on development of water law.
  3. Strong communication skills in verbal and written English.
  4. Strong interpersonal skills and proven record of legal engagement, with ability to work with the Cambodian government at all level.
  5. Thorough knowledge of Cambodian law and piped water business including experience working with/consulting to the private water operators or relevant stakeholders at all level.

3.9. Timeframes

The services are expected to be performed between March and June 2021:

Task/activity Date
RFP released 27 January 2021
Proposals received from interested suppliers 16 February 2021
Evaluation and decision on successful vendor; contracting end-February 2021
Start date (research, preparation, fieldwork) mid-March
Consultations on draft contract April – June
Contract completion date End June
4. Proposals

4.1. Interested suppliers must use the 3i Response Form when submitting proposals.

5. Evaluation

5.1. 3i will use an objective and reliable process to evaluate your proposal. Responses to this RFP will be evaluated based on:

  1. Compliance with this Request for Proposals (RFP).
  2. Understanding of and ability to meet the requirements and deadlines as specified.
  3. Overall value for money including:
    • Supplier expertise and experience with delivery of projects similar in nature to this RFP.
    • Expertise of particular individual(s) and overall team nominated to perform the services (refer criteria in Section 3.8).
    • Past performance relevant to this RFP (as determined by referee checks).
    • Approach – how you propose to provide the services specified in this RFP including timing.
  4. The fee to be charged for providing the Services.

5.2. Note that price will not be the sole criteria used to evaluate proposals.

5.3. 3i reserves the right to contract more than one supplier for these services, and may actively seek to contract more than one supplier to ensure supply of technical services.

5.4. 3i reserves the right to vary the contract term, and to exercise the option period at its sole discretion.

6. Further information

6.1. Bidders are required to comply with all terms and conditions set out in this RFP.

6.2. No unsuccessful bidders will be entitled to any redress against Palladium in the event that Palladium enters into an agreement with any other Supplier or person.

7. Terms and conditions

7.1. Potential suppliers should ensure that they understand and can comply with the terms outlined below.

7.2. All responses must be received by 4.00pm on 16 February 2021 by email to with “#237_Bulk water contract development – RFP” in the subject line.

Any proposals received after this time and date will not be considered.

7.3. The supplier is to complete the Response Form (provided separately).

7.4. The Response Form shall be submitted in English.

7.5. All services will be subject to the terms and conditions outlined in a purchase order or contract to be negotiated between the successful supplier and 3i.

7.6. The successful Bidder will be required to adhere to and sign a Palladium Business Partner Code of Conduct, a copy of which will be made available in the contracting stage.

7.7. Payments tied to project milestones or progress payments will be made in accordance with the purchase order or contract.

7.8. Unsuccessful bidders will be advised by email and letter as soon as 3i has made the final decision; no further correspondence will be entered into.

7.9. All services must be supplied within the timeframes specified in the purchase order or contract agreement. If for any reason the supplier cannot supply the services in this time frame, 3i will have the option of declaring the contract void and selecting another supplier to meet its needs.

7.10. Palladium is committed to child protection and safeguarding the welfare of children in the delivery of our international development programs. Due diligence procedures reflect this commitment and will include relevant criminal record and other background checks.

7.11. Further information about this RFP can be obtained as follows:

Stephanie Lymn, Operations Manager 3i, Palladium