Egypt's irrigation ministry: Tenth day of GERD talks see continued disagreements

Ahram Online , Monday 13 Jul 2020

Ethiopia had said it would review alternatives proposed by Egypt

The Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (photo: Reuters)
For the tenth day in a row, negotiations on Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) between Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan took place without reaching an agreement, the Egyptian irrigation ministry said.
“The ministers of irrigation of the three countries began the meeting by discussing the technical and legal discussions of Friday, when Egypt had suggested alternative agreements for the convergences of views on the points of disagreement. Sudan and Ethiopia also today suggested alternative draft agreements for points of legal and technical disagreement, but the discussions continued to reflect continuing disagreement on major issues,” read a statement by the ministry.
The ministry added that the legal and technical committees will continue their meetings on Monday, followed by a trilateral ministerial meeting which will generate a final report to be presented to South Africa, the chair of the African Union.
The AU is sponsoring this round of virtual talks.
On Friday, an Egyptian irrigation ministry statement said that Egypt has proposed several draft agreements converging views on procedures to deal with rules on the annual operation of the dam, on periods of extended drought and on refilling of the reservoir.
Ethiopia had said it would review alternatives proposed by Egypt, according to the Egyptian statement.
Egypt, which relies on the Nile for 95 percent of its fresh water, fears the mega-dam will significantly reduce the river’s flow, especially during the filling stages, and in periods of drought and dry years. Ethiopia, on the other hand, says its massive $4.8 billion megaproject is key to its development efforts.
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