Egyptian Water Minister, Mohamed Abdel Aty, has announced that the country is very interested in cooperating with other Nile Basin countries in addressing water management issues.
The statement was made when addressing a group of trainees at the conclusion of their programmes in “Environmental Hydrology in Arid and Semi-arid Areas” and “Integrated Water Resources Management”.
Organised by the National Water Research Center in Cairo, the training programmes leverage Egypt's various technical and institutional expertise in the field of water. The programs underscore the country's focus on water as a key element in implementing its foreign policy regime.
The training courses were designed to develop the technical capabilities of African researchers and specialists and to transfer the experiences gained during the program for application in their respective countries.
Wider cooperation in the Nile Basin also would contribute to successful sustainable development and raise the general standard of living. Any cooperation agreement would also address widespread challenges such as population expansion, spread of poverty, illiteracy and disease.
In the local press Abdel Atty is quoted as having said: “The training represents an opportunity for communication between the people of the African continent and for achieving integration between water engineers in African countries.”
Ethiopia and downstream states, Egypt and Sudan, continue to show no progress in their negotiations with respect to filling the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam, which has been at the core of regional disputes since 2011.
Cairo is demanding that Egypt, Ethiopia, and Sudan reach a legally-binding agreement to fill and operate the dam. The third filling is scheduled to take place in August and September this year.
In mid-September 2021, the UN Security Council called on the three countries to resume African Union-led negotiations, stressing the need to reach a “binding agreement on the filling and operation of the dam within a reasonable timetable.