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Egypt, Ethiopia still discussing impact study reports: Irrigation ministry spokesman

Ahram Online , Tuesday 6 Jun 2017
Ethiopia's Renaissance Dam (Photo: Al Ahram)

Egypt is still discussing with Ethiopia an initial report issued by two firms tasked with assessing the impact of the under-construction Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) on downstream countries, Egypt’s irrigation ministry spokesman Hossam Imam told Al-Ahram Arabic news website on Tuesday.

Egypt is currently negotiating with Ethiopia the period of time over which the dam’s reservoir should be filled after construction is completed.

Imam also said that the signatories of the Entebbe Agreement should apply the principle of cooperation between the Nile Basin countries.

The Entebbe agreement seeks to create a cooperative atmosphere between all Nile Basin countries and ensure that all these countries enjoy the socioeconomic benefits of the river.

Imam said that Egypt’s absence from any Nile Basin agreement would lead to the failure of these agreements.

Imam also added that successful management of international rivers should entail the combined efforts of all involved parties, who should have an integrated vision for the management of these rivers.

He said that a project for the development of Lake Victoria failed because not all Nile Basin countries were party to the agreement.

Cairo has repeatedly expressed concerns that the construction of the Renaissance Dam, which is more than halfway complete, could negatively affect Egypt's share of Nile water.

Addis Ababa, however, has maintained that the dam project, which Ethiopia says is vital for generating electricity, will not harm downstream countries, with Ethiopian FM Workneh Gebeyehu assuring Egyptians in April that Addis Ababa would never harm the Egyptian people and their interests.

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