Barrier Removal to cost effective development and implementation of Energy Efficiency Standard and Labelling (BRESEL) End of Project Eval

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Evaluation Plan:
2012-2016, Viet Nam
Evaluation Type:
Final Project
Planned End Date:
03/2015
Completion Date:
03/2015
Status:
Completed
Management Response:
Yes
Evaluation Budget(US $):
30,000

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Title Barrier Removal to cost effective development and implementation of Energy Efficiency Standard and Labelling (BRESEL) End of Project Eval
Atlas Project Number: 00058669
Evaluation Plan: 2012-2016, Viet Nam
Evaluation Type: Final Project
Status: Completed
Completion Date: 03/2015
Planned End Date: 03/2015
Management Response: Yes
Focus Area:
  • 1. Others
Corporate Outcome and Output (UNDP Strategic Plan 2014-2017)
  • 1. Output 1.5. Inclusive and sustainable solutions adopted to achieve increased energy efficiency and universal modern energy access (especially off-grid sources of renewable energy)
Evaluation Budget(US $): 30,000
Source of Funding: GEF
Joint Programme: No
Joint Evaluation: No
Evaluation Team members:
Name Title Email Nationality
Babul Azad M&E Officer babul.azad@undp.org
GEF Evaluation: Yes
Evaluation Type:
Focal Area: Climate Change
Project Type: FSP
GEF Phase: GEF-4
PIMS Number: 3327
Key Stakeholders: MOIT
Countries: VIET NAM
Lessons
Findings
Recommendations
1 Follow up BRESL project: Due to the various reasons described above, most of the project activities did not gain momentum until mid-2011. However, the project is now on track and has started making significant contribution to the ES&L in the region. In fact, the targets have been over achieved for some significant activities such as the signing of MRAs, development of standards, etc. Moreover, encouraged by the implementation experience of BRESL, the participating countries are now enthusiastic to carry this work forward through replication and up scaling. However, the lack of funding to ensure appropriate technical support and knowledge transfer is likely to pose a substantial threat to the continuation of key activities such as official signing of MRAs, operationalization of REESLN, enactment of the various drafted policies, up gradation of testing facilities, higher participation of the manufacturers, public awareness, and enhancement of knowledge for stakeholders in both public and private sectors, etc. It is therefore recommended that the newly designed BRESL project is presented to interested donor organizations such as GEF, JICA, USAID, World Bank, and ADB, etc. who have existing relevant technical capacities and interest in climate change and energy efficiency. The REESLN Secretariat in coordination with the PC DIPs can play a key role towards the development and materialization of a follow up project(s) or program(s). Similarly, active partners such as the ICA and Energy Foundation should be provided important roles in future projects for working in BRESL and non-BRESL countries.
2 Engagement of Policy Makers: Public sector stakeholders mostly included technical agencies and their representatives. However, to push the process of legislation, it is highly recommended that the future BRESL project maintain direct linkages with legislators in the PCs through awareness and technical support activities.
3 Private Sector Participation: Despite some collaboration with the private sector, the primary focus of the BRESL project?s capacity building activities has been on government policy makers and technical experts. To enhance ownership by the private sector future ES&L projects and activities should make efforts to enhance private sector participation. Some likely activities include inclusion of private sector in activities such as training, higher co-financing by the private sector, and help in overcoming of financial barriers through alternative financial mechanisms such as matching grants, tax breaks, and loans, etc.
4 Capacity on Labeling Schemes: Labeling schemes for the target products in most of the PCs are still either nonexistent or voluntary. By building on the positive project outcomes, it is recommended that the country-level capacity of labeling schemes for the target products are enhanced through training, information exchange, and implementation guidance.
5 Baseline Scenarios: Following the lessons learned from BRESL, it is recommended that future ES&L projects should be based on the existing technical capacity and infrastructure such as expert knowledge, laboratory capacity, etc. This assessment would ensure that proposed activities are in line with a country?s existing capacity and measures can be advised for improvement of this capacity.
6 Range of Targeted Products: BRESL focused on the harmonization of selected products that are widely used across the PCs. However, the positive experience from working with these seven products has led CTs to the realization that any similar future project should focus on a larger number and variety of products. It is therefore recommended that a larger range of products are included in any future projects.
7 REESLN: Although REESLN has been established during the project?s lifetime, it is expected to operationalize after the expiration of BRESL project. To ensure that the network becomes operational and achieves its planned objectives it will be necessary to provide future funding and technical support to this initiative. Otherwise, the fate of REESLN will be the same as numerous other similar initiatives that have fizzled out after the expiration of funding and technical support. Moreover, the long-term financial sustainability of the network should be ensured through different initiatives, e.g. fee based membership, charging for high demand services, etc. Also, once operational, REESLN should also be widely disseminated to concerned stakeholders in the public and private sectors in the region. Currently, only a limited number of public sector agencies are mostly aware of the presence of the network. Moreover, in the medium to long term, REESLN needs to be linked to other large-scale international and regional initiatives of its kind.
8 Regional Reviews: Following the UNDP-GEF guidelines, BRESL has been subject to regular internal reviews as well as a mid-term and terminal evaluation. However, based on interviews with RPMU and CTs, it is recommended that owing to its regional nature, a similar project would also benefit from additional annual external reviews so that country-level issues can be identified and corrected in time. The classification of such issues will also clarify understanding and enhance coordination between the regional and country offices.
9 Alternate Information Exchange Mechanisms: The BRESL project primarily relied on face-to-face communication primarily comprising of the annual RPSC meetings and TWG meetings, and email communication. However, considering the complex nature of the regional project encompassing six countries, these occasional meetings are insufficient to address the project?s ongoing concerns of developing a mutual understanding and improving coordination issues. Considering the resource limitations, it is recommended that alternative economical forms of ongoing communication are utilized by the RPMU, such as the establishment of quarterly video-conferencing meetings, ongoing discussion platforms, etc. The REESLN itself can be used as a starting point / platform for such interaction.
10 Provision of a larger and diverse pool of experts to the RPMU and PMUs: Comprising of four individuals, including technical and support staff, the RPMU staffing structure is minimal. Consequently, the unit has to rely on consultants, partners, and sub-contractors for technical support and implementation. However, the range of expertise and pool of experts available to the RPMU has been somewhat limited in comparison to the diverse needs of the PCs. Similarly, the PMUs have had limited experience in issues such as legislation, marketing, etc. It is therefore recommended that a wider list of expertise is made available to the RPMU through activities such as signing of MOUs with public and private sector entities, developing a roster of regional consultants, etc. This expansion in the expert pool will have to be complimented with higher budgets as the required ES&L expertise is expected to be spread across the Asia and Pacific region.
1. Recommendation: Follow up BRESL project: Due to the various reasons described above, most of the project activities did not gain momentum until mid-2011. However, the project is now on track and has started making significant contribution to the ES&L in the region. In fact, the targets have been over achieved for some significant activities such as the signing of MRAs, development of standards, etc. Moreover, encouraged by the implementation experience of BRESL, the participating countries are now enthusiastic to carry this work forward through replication and up scaling. However, the lack of funding to ensure appropriate technical support and knowledge transfer is likely to pose a substantial threat to the continuation of key activities such as official signing of MRAs, operationalization of REESLN, enactment of the various drafted policies, up gradation of testing facilities, higher participation of the manufacturers, public awareness, and enhancement of knowledge for stakeholders in both public and private sectors, etc. It is therefore recommended that the newly designed BRESL project is presented to interested donor organizations such as GEF, JICA, USAID, World Bank, and ADB, etc. who have existing relevant technical capacities and interest in climate change and energy efficiency. The REESLN Secretariat in coordination with the PC DIPs can play a key role towards the development and materialization of a follow up project(s) or program(s). Similarly, active partners such as the ICA and Energy Foundation should be provided important roles in future projects for working in BRESL and non-BRESL countries.
Management Response: [Added: 2015/12/27]

With more than 5 years operation of BRESL project, we have already accumulated much experience on regional cooperation on EES&L. In order to make the project sustainable and long-time operation, RPMU has started to develop the project concept and officially submitted PIF to GEF by July 2015 with consideration of the achievements and outputs of the BRESL Project and the sustainability of the ES&L program in the regional and national levels. The initial concept was already discussed with the RPSC, which built upon the completed BRESL Project. The new developed project concept was aligned with the GEF 6 objectives and goals and submitted following the UNDP/GEF project development cycles.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
New project concept has been submitted to GEF, original member of RPMU will take a lead to support the project concept to be approved by coordination with relevant partners, which include government agencies, private sectors and international agencies, etc
[Added: 2015/12/27] [Last Updated: 2016/12/19]
UNDP-GEF 2016/12 Completed History
2. Recommendation: Engagement of Policy Makers: Public sector stakeholders mostly included technical agencies and their representatives. However, to push the process of legislation, it is highly recommended that the future BRESL project maintain direct linkages with legislators in the PCs through awareness and technical support activities.
Management Response: [Added: 2015/12/27]

The engagement of policy maker is the key factor to realize the project overall objectives, on the basis of technical harmonization, it will move forward to policy part. In the BRESL project, we conducted on the technical part, but policy makers should be involved in all activities and capacity building for bring better understanding on EES&L which will give a hand on pushing BRESL outputs into national level. In the new project, also relevant activities for policy makers were designed.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Relevant component and activities were included in the new project concept.
[Added: 2015/12/27]
GEF-UNDP 2015/12 Completed
3. Recommendation: Private Sector Participation: Despite some collaboration with the private sector, the primary focus of the BRESL project?s capacity building activities has been on government policy makers and technical experts. To enhance ownership by the private sector future ES&L projects and activities should make efforts to enhance private sector participation. Some likely activities include inclusion of private sector in activities such as training, higher co-financing by the private sector, and help in overcoming of financial barriers through alternative financial mechanisms such as matching grants, tax breaks, and loans, etc.
Management Response: [Added: 2015/12/27]

In BRESL project, the collaboration with private sector is very limited. In the new designed project concept, this part will be carried in partnership with the appliance manufacturers, distributors and retailers in China, as well as those in the Asian countries that are importing such appliances. Such partnerships are expected to result in even higher co-financing from the private sector.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Relevant component and activities were included in the new project concept.
[Added: 2015/12/27]
GEF-UNDP 2015/12 Completed
4. Recommendation: Capacity on Labeling Schemes: Labeling schemes for the target products in most of the PCs are still either nonexistent or voluntary. By building on the positive project outcomes, it is recommended that the country-level capacity of labeling schemes for the target products are enhanced through training, information exchange, and implementation guidance.
Management Response: [Added: 2015/12/27]

By different paces on EES&L for each CT, capacity building on institutional and personnel is always important and indispensible. In the concept of the new project, the activities related to institutional building and technical support was designed, aiming at enabling of enhanced EES&L institutional framework and organizational & support infrastructure for more effective implementation of the related regulations, policies, programs in China and in ASEAN+ countries.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Relevant component and activities were included in the new project concept.
[Added: 2015/12/27]
GEF-UNDP 2015/12 Completed
5. Recommendation: Baseline Scenarios: Following the lessons learned from BRESL, it is recommended that future ES&L projects should be based on the existing technical capacity and infrastructure such as expert knowledge, laboratory capacity, etc. This assessment would ensure that proposed activities are in line with a country?s existing capacity and measures can be advised for improvement of this capacity.
Management Response: [Added: 2015/12/27]

As the specialty of BRESL project, which took quite long time for BRESL project design, leading to the baseline scenarios did not fulfill with real situation. And this can be solved out in CAEEE project.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
During new project development, baseline scenarios will be based on country-level capacity and real situation on EES&L.
[Added: 2015/12/27] [Last Updated: 2016/12/19]
UNDP-GEF 2016/12 Completed History
6. Recommendation: Range of Targeted Products: BRESL focused on the harmonization of selected products that are widely used across the PCs. However, the positive experience from working with these seven products has led CTs to the realization that any similar future project should focus on a larger number and variety of products. It is therefore recommended that a larger range of products are included in any future projects.
Management Response: [Added: 2015/12/27]

In recent years, the volume of the appliances/equipment exported within ASEAN+ countries has indicated a high-speed increasing rate. In order to make our new project to be more applicable and practical, we initial select some typical products including electric water heater, microwave oven, induction cooker, washing machine, TV and computer monitor, LED products, double-capped fluorescent lamp and 3-phase power transformer. These target products were initially selected based on the following: 1) their market share; 2) their unit energy consumption; 3) volume produced and sold in-country and in the Asian region; and 4) findings and recommendations from BRESL countries.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
This part of recommendation has already been included into CAEEE project.
[Added: 2015/12/27]
GEF-UNDP 2015/12 Completed
7. Recommendation: REESLN: Although REESLN has been established during the project?s lifetime, it is expected to operationalize after the expiration of BRESL project. To ensure that the network becomes operational and achieves its planned objectives it will be necessary to provide future funding and technical support to this initiative. Otherwise, the fate of REESLN will be the same as numerous other similar initiatives that have fizzled out after the expiration of funding and technical support. Moreover, the long-term financial sustainability of the network should be ensured through different initiatives, e.g. fee based membership, charging for high demand services, etc. Also, once operational, REESLN should also be widely disseminated to concerned stakeholders in the public and private sectors in the region. Currently, only a limited number of public sector agencies are mostly aware of the presence of the network. Moreover, in the medium to long term, REESLN needs to be linked to other large-scale international and regional initiatives of its kind.
Management Response: [Added: 2015/12/27]

After establishment of REESLN, by-laws and business plan were developed to realize long-term operation of REESLN. RPMU staffs are seeking for some opportunities with other programs related or initiates to jointly operate this network or inject financial support for maintenance.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Seek for cooperation with other EES&L projects or initiatives, like CLASP and Asia project.
[Added: 2015/12/27] [Last Updated: 2016/12/19]
GEF-UNDP 2016/12 Completed History
8. Recommendation: Regional Reviews: Following the UNDP-GEF guidelines, BRESL has been subject to regular internal reviews as well as a mid-term and terminal evaluation. However, based on interviews with RPMU and CTs, it is recommended that owing to its regional nature, a similar project would also benefit from additional annual external reviews so that country-level issues can be identified and corrected in time. The classification of such issues will also clarify understanding and enhance coordination between the regional and country offices.
Management Response: [Added: 2015/12/27]

As BRESL project is a regional project with 6 participating countries, regional coordinate and communication was quite difficult. Although after the MTR, the communication channel was established and the communication seems quite efficient. However, beside the regular review required by UNDP such as QOR, APR, PIR, MTR and TE, the assessment for each country on time seems not sufficient which bring to some issues were not solved on time hindering the smooth implementation of the project by each country.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
If the CAEEE project approved and into implementation, the project management office should take this into consideration by arranging regular meeting, document review, teleconference interview, and non-scheduled contact, etc.
[Added: 2015/12/27] [Last Updated: 2016/12/19]
GEF-UNDP 2016/12 Completed History
9. Recommendation: Alternate Information Exchange Mechanisms: The BRESL project primarily relied on face-to-face communication primarily comprising of the annual RPSC meetings and TWG meetings, and email communication. However, considering the complex nature of the regional project encompassing six countries, these occasional meetings are insufficient to address the project?s ongoing concerns of developing a mutual understanding and improving coordination issues. Considering the resource limitations, it is recommended that alternative economical forms of ongoing communication are utilized by the RPMU, such as the establishment of quarterly video-conferencing meetings, ongoing discussion platforms, etc. The REESLN itself can be used as a starting point / platform for such interaction.
Management Response: [Added: 2015/12/27]

During project implementation, communication channel was established and the communication seems quite efficient by the end of the project. When project completed, REESLN will be acting as a long-term mechanism to realize this objective as the information-sharing hub.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Sustainably maintain the REESLN operation to realize information sharing objective, which is already defined as one of the functions of REESLN, by enhancing efficient and economical forms of communication.
[Added: 2015/12/27] [Last Updated: 2016/12/19]
GEF-UNDP 2016/12 Completed History
10. Recommendation: Provision of a larger and diverse pool of experts to the RPMU and PMUs: Comprising of four individuals, including technical and support staff, the RPMU staffing structure is minimal. Consequently, the unit has to rely on consultants, partners, and sub-contractors for technical support and implementation. However, the range of expertise and pool of experts available to the RPMU has been somewhat limited in comparison to the diverse needs of the PCs. Similarly, the PMUs have had limited experience in issues such as legislation, marketing, etc. It is therefore recommended that a wider list of expertise is made available to the RPMU through activities such as signing of MOUs with public and private sector entities, developing a roster of regional consultants, etc. This expansion in the expert pool will have to be complimented with higher budgets as the required ES&L expertise is expected to be spread across the Asia and Pacific region.
Management Response: [Added: 2015/12/27]

Along with the implementation of BRESL project, the needs for experts from each CT are rising gradually. REESLN was set up by 4 main functions, which include information sharing mentioned above, expert database, training and harmonization. To realize this objective, all TWG experts, EE experts and etc. who have involved in the project and also new experts recommended by CT can be registered and recorded in the database.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Establish expert database on the basis of BRESL experts and candidates nominated by each CT.
[Added: 2015/12/27] [Last Updated: 2017/12/01]
GEF-UNDP 2017/12 Completed As this is a regional project, this action has been undertaken by the regional team led by China office. History

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