GERD Negotiations: Egypt Sends Out Feeler

PM Calls For Three-way Legally Binding Agreement

11 Feb 2022 by The Water Diplomat
CAIRO, Egypt

On the 25th of January Egyptian Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly announced on Facebook that Egypt is ready to resume the negotiations on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) as soon as possible.

The Prime Minister called for discussions towards a legally binding agreement that furthers the interests of the three countries affected by the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), i.e. Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan.

Negotiations over the construction and filling of the dam have been hosted by the African Union (AU) since 2011 when Ethiopia began constructing the dam. Tensions had escalated over the dam in July 2021, when Ethiopia announced the second filling of the dam, while Egypt and Sudan took the position that a binding agreement should be reached on the dam before it being filled.  

As reported in The water Diplomat, Egypt and Sudan referred the matter to the UN Security Council, which urged the three countries to resume talks in September and stressed the need for an agreement to be reached under AU auspices.

The announcement by the Egyptian Prime Minister came a little over a week before a two-day summit of African leaders (AU summit). It followed conciliatory statements made on the 21st of January by Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed who stated that the GERD holds multiple benefits for the two downstream countries, Sudan and Egypt, including flood management and water storage.

Ahmed also emphasised that the main purpose of the dam is to produce electricity, not to consume water and expressed a desire to nurture a narrative towards building peace, cooperation and coexistence.

The Egyptian government, however, remains opposed to any action, such as the filling of the dam, that may compromise Egypt’s supply of Nile water.            

Related Topics

6 Jan 2022 CAIRO, Egypt

GCC minister acknowledges Egypt's pivotal role in regional stability; emphasizes need for legally binding agreement among Egypt, Ethiopia, Sudan

21 Sep 2021 NEW YORK NY, United States

UN Security Council stresses need for Ethiopia, Sudan and Egypt to continue talks with African Union in order to agree water sharing of Nile River.

30 Apr 2021 KINSHASA, Democratic Republic of Congo

Ethiopia has called for a meeting of the African Union as tripartite talks fail again,plans to recommence reservoir filling in July's rainy season. Egypt and Sudan have insisted up...