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Egypt, Ethiopia, and Sudan to meet on controversial dam

17 October 2013 12:39 (Last updated 17 October 2013 12:47)
Ethiopia's Grand Renaissance Dam on the Blue Nile is the focus of the latest row between Addis Ababa and Cairo

ADDIS ABABA (AA) – The Ethiopian Ministry of Water and Energy said on Thursday that officials from Ethiopia, Egypt and Sudan will meet next week to discuss the impact of a multibillion dollar Ethiopian dam on downstream countries Egypt and Sudan.

The meeting will discuss the recommendations laid out by a tripartite committee on the project, Fekahmed Negash, the Director of Boundary and Trans-Boundary Rivers Affairs at the Ethiopian Ministry of Water and Energy, told Ethiopian state television.

Ethiopian plans to build a dam on the Nile has raised worries in Egypt that the dam will sharply reduce amounts of water coming to it from the river, its only source of water.

Ethiopia's Grand Renaissance Dam on the Blue Nile is the focus of the latest row between the two countries. Ethiopia had diverted the flow of the river, from which most of Egypt's Nile water share comes, in May, raising concerns in Egypt.

A committee of experts from Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan was formed in 2011 with the aim of assessing the environmental, economic and social effects the dam will have on downstream countries Egypt and Sudan.

A few days after Ethiopia had diverted the flow of the Blue Nile, the committee, which contained ten water experts from the three countries as well as international experts, recommended conducting further studies on safety measures related to the construction of the dam as well as the impact it will have on Egypt and Sudan.

Ethiopia says, apart from pushing its development plans forward, the new dam will benefit Egypt and Sudan because the electricity generated from it will be available for the two countries to purchase.

According to Negash, the meeting, which will be held on October 22, will be the first between experts from Ethiopia, Egypt and Sudan after the committee of experts produced its report in May.

englishnews@aa.com.tr

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