Egypt’s foreign minister said on Friday that Egypt insisted on a “win-win” scenario in the talks with Ethiopian officials on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam during his visit to Addis Ababa on Thursday.
In a statement to state agency MENA following his return from Addis Ababa early on Friday, Sameh Shoukry said that there was a complete understanding from the Ethiopian side regarding Egyptian concerns about the project’s effect on its share of the Nile water.
“The basis of our talks was built upon the recognition of Egypt’s water rights and needs; those needs cannot be touched because they are related to the Egyptian people’s life,” the foreign minister told MENA, adding that at the same time there were ways to preserve those rights and needs without negatively affecting the needs of Ethiopia for development and power generation.
Shoukry visited Ethiopia on Thursday where he held talks with Ethiopia’s prime minister and foreign minister to discuss the dam as well as bilateral relations.
Egyptian authorities have expressed major concerns regarding the hydroelectric dam currently under construction on the White Nile in Ethiopia’s highlands, arguing that a report by an international panel of experts last year indicated the need for further studies to determine the dam’s impact on Sudan and Egypt, which are both downstream from the project.
“There were many ways to deal with Egypt’s water needs for drinking, food and agriculture and Ethiopia’s needs for development and generating power without affecting negatively on each other. There are already many ways and fields of cooperation between Egypt and Ethiopia,” Shoukry added.
Egypt’s foreign minister also revealed that his Ethiopian counterpart had told him that an Ethiopian public diplomacy delegation was going to visit Cairo within the coming days.
Source : Ahram online