Meeting on Ethiopian dam ends without accord

The water ministers of the three countries held talks in Khartoum on Monday in an attempt to reach common grounds over Ethiopia's controversial multibillion hydroelectric dam project.

Meeting on Ethiopian dam ends without accord

World Bulletin / News Desk

A ministerial meeting between Sudan, Egypt and Ethiopia to bridge gaps over an Ethiopian dam project on the River Nile ended Monday without any accord.

"The meeting was transparent and we tackled several issues related to the implementation of an expert panel on the dam," Sudanese Minister of Water Resources and Electricity Muataz Musa told reporters.

He, however, said "certain" issues will be discussed during a planned meeting in Khartoum on January 4-5, giving no further details.

The water ministers of the three countries held talks in Khartoum on Monday in an attempt to reach common grounds over Ethiopia's controversial multibillion hydroelectric dam project.

Musa has shuttled between the two delegations, who stayed in two separate meeting rooms, according to an Anadolu Agency reporter on the site.

The Sudanese side presented a proposal to bridge gaps between Ethiopia and Egypt.

"This is the only thing we have right now, they either take it or leave it," Musa told reporters.

The gathering is the latest in a series of meetings aimed at building confidence between the three nations regarding Ethiopia's long-anticipated Grand Renaissance Dam.

Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir on Wednesday confirmed his country's support Ethiopia's dam project, noting that Khartoum would enjoy a large share of the electricity thus generated.

It was the first time that al-Bashir personally confirmed his country's support for the Ethiopian dam, which had adversely effected relations between Cairo and Addis Ababa earlier this year.

Ethiopia's plans to build a massive dam on the Blue Nile have raised fears in Egypt that the move would threaten Egypt's historical share of the historical river, which represents the country's primary water source.

In May, Addis Ababa diverted the flow of the river, further raising concerns in Cairo.

A tripartite committee of experts from Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan was drawn up in 2011 and tasked with assessing the dam's possible environmental, economic and social effects on downstream countries Egypt and Sudan.

The committee, which includes ten water experts from the three countries along with international experts, recently called for further study of safety issues related to the dam's construction and the project's possible impact on the two downstream states.

Ethiopia, for its part, insists the new dam will benefit Egypt and Sudan, both of which will be invited to purchase electricity generated by it.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 10 Aralık 2013, 09:39
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