Egypt’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Sameh Shoukry will be heading to Ethiopia in a bid to end a standoff over Ethiopia’s multi-billion dollar Grand Renaissance Dam (GERD).
By Nadine Awadalla, Eric Knecht (Reuters) |
CAIRO―Egypt’s Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry will visit Addis Ababa next week for talks with his Ethiopian counterpart, a foreign ministry spokesman said, in a bid to end a standoff over a multi-billion dollar dam project on the Nile river.
The dispute, which also involves Sudan, centers on control of a share of the waters of the Nile that stretches 6,695 km (4,184 miles) from Lake Victoria to the Mediterranean and is the economic lifeblood of all three countries.
Cairo says the dam would threaten water supplies that have fed Egypt’s agriculture and economy for thousands of years.
Ethiopia says the Grand Renaissance Dam, which it hopes will help make it Africa’s largest power exporter, will have no major effect on Egypt. It accuses Cairo of flexing its political muscle to deter financiers from backing other Ethiopian power projects.
Delegations from Egypt, Sudan and Ethiopia met in Cairo in November to approve a study by a French firm commissioned to assess the dam’s environmental and economic impact.
But negotiations stalled when they failed to agree on the initial report with each blaming others for blocking progress.
Sudan’s Irrigation Minister Moataz Moussa said Egypt was unwilling to accept amendments to the report put forward by Khartoum and Addis Ababa.
Sudan and Ethiopia had expressed concern over several points, especially the proposed baseline from which the study would measure the dam’s impacts, Moussa said in November.
Another source of disagreement is whether Ethiopia plans to complete construction before negotiations over water flows have finished.
Continue reading this story at Reuters
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- French Firm, Artelia Group, Picked to Study Ethiopia’s Mega Dam as Uneasy Truce Holds
- GERD: Is Tripartite National Technical Committee Failing to Create Consensus between Ethiopia, Egypt and the Sudan?