Sudan, Ethiopia remain committed to Nile dam agreement

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A general view of Ethiopia's Grand Renaissance Dam, as it undergoes construction, is seen during a media tour along the river Nile in Benishangul Gumuz Region, Guba Woreda, in Ethiopia March 31, 2015. According to a government official, the dam has hit the 41 percent completion mark. Picture taken March 31, 2015. REUTER/Tiksa Negeri - RTR4VQ4A
A general view of Ethiopia’s Grand Renaissance Dam, as it undergoes construction, is seen during a media tour along the river Nile in Benishangul Gumuz Region, Guba Woreda, in Ethiopia March 31, 2015. According to a government official, the dam has hit the 41 percent completion mark. Picture taken March 31, 2015. REUTER/Tiksa Negeri – RTR4VQ4A

Sudan and Ethiopia on Wednesday reiterated their commitment to the 2015 tripartite agreement they signed with Egypt to resolve the dispute on the upcoming Nile dam in Ethiopia.

Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir and Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed made the commitment during their talks in Khartoum.

“We are committed to the Declaration of Principles on the GERD (Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam) and to the importance of the tripartite committee,” al-Bashir said.

He hoped the tripartite technical committee of Ethiopia, Egypt and Sudan would achieve cooperation in water security and overcome the barriers which halted the technical negotiations.

The Ethiopian prime minister reiterated his country’s keenness to enhance strategic ties with Sudan in all fields and to work with Sudan to realize peace and development in the continent.

The last round of tripartite talks on GERD was suspended in April without reaching an agreement on the technical report prepared by French firms on the potential impact of the dam.

In December 2017, Egypt proposed to have the World Bank as a neutral party on the tripartite technical committee, but Ethiopia refused.

GERD, which will cost 4.7 billion U.S. dollars, is now 64 percent complete. Ethiopia hopes the project will provide a constant supply of clean and affordable power and accelerate its shift from an agricultural economy to an industrial powerhouse.

Ethiopia and Sudan eye massive benefits from the GERD construction, while Egypt is concerned it might affect its 55.5-billion-cubic-meter annual share of the Nile River water.

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