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Egypt to coordinate with Ethiopia on Renaissance Dam

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Minister of Irrigation and Water Resources says Egypt and Sudan could benefit from Ethiopia’s dam

A picture taken on May 28, 2013 shows the Blue Nile River in Guba, Ethiopia, during its diversion ceremony  (AFP/File, William Lloyd-George)

A picture taken on 28 May 2013 shows the Blue Nile River in Guba, Ethiopia, during its diversion ceremony
(AFP/File, William Lloyd-George)

Egypt, Sudan, and Ethiopia are all committed to coordinating and cooperating in dealing with Ethiopia’s Grand Renaissance Dam, said Egypt’s Ministry of Irrigation and Water Resources on Monday.

Egyptian Minister of Irrigation and Water Resources Mohamed Abdel Moteleb said that it was “time to consider a new strategy for the available investment opportunity,” adding that any matter dealing with the dam must be agreed upon by the governments of the three countries.

The countries’ water ministers began meetings in the Sudanese capital of Khartoum on Monday in order to review recommendations put forth by a report formed by a tripartite committee investigating the impacts of the dam on Ethiopia’s neighbours in the north.

Abdel Moteleb added that trilateral support for the dam could set a “good example for cooperation in the region,” adding that he hoped that the outcome of the process would be the “beginning of a new era of cooperation between the three countries.”

“I would like to recall the initiative put forth by the Prime Minister of Ethiopia, a proposal considering the Renaissance Dam a joint regional project from which the three countries could benefit,” said Moteleb in his Monday address to the representatives from the three countries.

Last week Egyptian Minister of Foreign Affairs Nabil Fahmy stressed the importance of joint action and cooperation between countries when dealing with Ethiopia’s dam, saying that the water issue must not be dealt with as a “zero-sum game.”

Spokesman of the foreign ministry Badr Abdelatty said that the Prime Minister of Ethiopia Hailemariam Desalegn would come to Cairo “soon.”

“We will continue dialogue with Ethiopia and our Sudanese brothers,” added Abdelatty.

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