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Tri-national report says dam will not severely harm Egypt or Sudan: Ethiopia

Ethiopia stresses that a much-awaited joint report shows Renaissance Dam will not 'greatly harm' either Sudan or Egypt

MENA and Ahram Online, Monday 3 Jun 2013
Nile
Nile river in Egypt
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Ethiopia's Ministry of Foreign Affairs asserted on Sunday that the awaited report on the impact of the Ethiopia's Renaissance Dam on Nile Basin countries by the tri-national committee - comprised of Egypt, Sudan and Ethiopia - shows that the project will not "greatly harm" Egypt and Sudan.

The statement issued by the Ethiopian ministry asserted that Ethiopia's Ministry of Water and Power has confirmed that the design of the Renaissance Dam is based on international rules and standards and that it will benefit all three countries: Egypt, Sudan and Ethiopia.

"The Tri-partite committee has suggested ideas that aim to help the Nile Basin countries benefit as much as possible from the new dam," added the statement. It also praised Ethiopia for taking the intiiative in forming the tri-national committee "out of good intentions and respect for Egypt."

The joint committee has been studying the impact of the Renaissance Dam project since May 2012.

On Sunday, President Mohamed Morsi met with the committee to discuss their final report.

The meeting was also attended by Egyptian ministers of foreign affairs and irrigation.

Later, Morsi called for a meeting with political forces on Monday to discuss the committee's report. Ethiopia announced on Tuesday that it would begin diverting the course of the Blue Nile, one of the Nile River’s two major tributaries, as part of its project to build the new dam.

The majority of Nile water that reaches Egypt and Sudan originates in the Blue Nile.

The Renaissance Dam has been a source of concern for the Egyptian government with fears expressed that the project, if completed, could negatively impact the volume of Nile water that will reach Egypt.

Egypt will need an additional 21 billion cubic metres of water per year by 2050, on top of its current 55 billion cubic metres quota, to meet the water needs of a projected population of 150 million people, according to Egypt's National Planning Institute.

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