As the construction of the Great Renaissance Dam continues inexorably, downstream countries, Egypt in particular, are desperate for the right formula to reach a binding agreement, preferably before the start of operation of the dam.
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi is putting additional pressure on Ethiopia in negotiations to operate the Great Renaissance Dam (GERD). During a visit to Sudan, he called for a binding agreement between the parties by the summer of 2021 while reiterating his support for Sudan in the border tension between Ethiopia.
“We affirm the need to return to effective and serious negotiations in order to reach, as quickly as possible and before the next rainy season, a fair, balanced and legal binding agreement,” Al Sissi said after a hearing with his counterpart. Sudanese.
The deadline is due to the fact that Ethiopia intends to start a second filling of the dam in the next rainy season, while negotiations between the three parties have been sluggish for many years. This second filling follows a first carried out in 2020 at the same period while the countries were still at the negotiating table. This will ensure that the dam is operational in 2023.
Begun in 2011, negotiations first focused on whether or not to build the dam, its impact on Egypt’s water supply, its technical specifications and finally the terms of its operation, without reaching any agreement. In the meantime, Ethiopia is continuing to build the dam, which it does not intend to be delayed.
Source Ecofin Agency