Renaissance Dam talks end without agreement-Daily News Egypt

Egypt's water minister calls discussions "difficult" after failure to agree on technical studies

Daily News Egypt
December 13,2015

The tripartite committee on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) ended its tenth meeting on Saturday without reaching to agreement on key technical issues.

The meeting in Khartoum between irrigation and foreign ministers from Sudan, Egypt and Ethiopia aimed at refreshing technical talks on the dam and addressing concerns from the Egyptian side.

However, after two days of discussions, the parties revealed that they had failed to reach an agreement on the issues, although they agreed to a new round of talks on 27 and 28 December.

A key sticking point for the talks is the question of whether technical studies should be completed before the full construction of the dam, which is being built across the Blue Nile in Ethiopia. The three nations had previously agreed on technical studies, identifying French and Dutch consultants to provide independent assessments.

However, according to Egypt, construction on the dam is now 40% complete and proceeding apace, while the technical studies are incomplete. Egypt has long feared that the dam might threaten its supply of Nile water, potentially causing drought.

Egypt’s Minister of Irrigation and Water Resources, Hossam El-Din Moghazy, said that the negotiations had been difficult. He said the next round of talks would continue to address completion of the studies, in line with agreements reached earlier this year.

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