The leaders of Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan will meet on Monday on the sidelines of the African Union summit in Addis Ababa to discuss disagreements over the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), as well as regional issues.
The meeting is aimed at breaking the deadlock in negotiations over disputes in the construction of theGER and its impact on downstream Nile basin countries.
Ethiopia and Sudan have not accepted the results of a report issued in March 2017 by European consultancy on the potential impact of the dam on downstream countries, which concluded that the speed of construction could negatively affect Egypt’s water share.
Ethiopia has so far opposed a recent proposal by Cairo to involve the World Bank in the stalled technical negotiations.
Egypt’s President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi has been in Addis Ababa since Saturday to participate in the 30th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of Heads of State and Government of the African Union, which is taking place from 22 to 29 January.
On Saturday, El-Sisi chaired a meeting by the Peace and Security Council (PSC), the AU body in charge of maintaining continental peace and security, which Egypt is heading in January.
The Egyptian president also met on Saturday with his Sudanese counterpart, Omar Al-Bashir, to discuss bilateral relations.
Earlier this month, El-Sisi received Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn in Cairo and stressed the necessity of overcoming any current obstacles in negotiations over the dam.
El-Sisi expressed to the Ethiopian PM his “extreme concern” over the lack of progress in the negotiations over the building of Ethiopia’s massive dam, though he did convey understanding of the developmental goals the east African country aims to achieve via the GERD.
The dam, situated near Ethiopia’s border with Sudan, is slated for completion this year and expected to generate 6,000 megawatts of electricity.
Ethiopia hopes to be able to export electricity generated by the dam, which will be the largest hydroelectric power plant in Africa.
First Published by Ahram Online