Ethiopia Commits to International Experts Report on GERD

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Addis Ababa, 26 August 2014 (WIC) –
The two-day meeting of the tripartite ministerial committee between Sudan, Ethiopia and Egypt began on Monday in Khartoum to discuss the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) issue.

The meeting comes as part of Sudan’s continuous support to countries of the Nile basin and commitment towards cooperation among partners to exploit water resources for sustainable development in favour of all the basin countries.

During the conference’s opening remarks, Ethiopia's Water, Irrigation and Energy Minister, Alemayehu Tegenu affirmed that Ethiopia has delivered on facilitating the issue for both Sudan and Egypt, adding that his country is committed to the recommendations of the International Panel of Experts (IPoE) and has already started the implementation of the items in regards to the GERD safety measures.

Alemayehu asserted the equal use of Nile waters to the three parties, adding that Ethiopia is committed to transparent cooperation and expressed his country's readiness to work in full transparency to mutually benefit the three States.

He stressed that Ethiopia has no desire or intention to harm Sudan or Egypt and expects that the ongoing meetings in Khartoum will lead to a roadmap to pave the way for the implementation of the international experts' recommendations.

The importance of cooperation in the Eastern Nile and Nile Basin was emphasised by the Sudanese Minister of Irrigation, Mutaz Musa Abdalla, in the opening session of the fourth Tripartite Ministerial meeting held yesterday and which will continue today.

"It is incumbent upon us to put in place good neighborhoods and cooperative practices and mechanisms to harness and manage our water resources to ensure that the people of the three countries enjoy the benefits from their shared water resources, to meet their current and future needs without causing significant harm to each other and to also realise and assure adequate regional development," said Abdalla.

He concluded by stressing that Sudan supports the agreement on inclusive Nile Basin cooperation and asserting that many other challenging and pressing matters within the basin could be solved and preceded under the spirit of cooperation without being obstructed by absence and a lack of trust and confidence.

Meanwhile, the Egyptian Minister of Water Resources, Dr. Hossam El Din Moghazy affirmed the great importance of the three Eastern Nile Basin countries in order to activate the agreed upon measures to implement the recommendations of the final report of the IPoE on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam.

He added that Egypt hopes that the common motivation to move forward will enable the meeting to overcome any outstanding issues and reach a win-win agreement.

Moghazy also affirmed that Egypt has never been and will never be against the development of the Nile Basin as long as the aim remains to achieve mutual sustainable development and integrated management of the Nile water resources in order to attain mutual benefits and aid development in all the countries. (Sudan Vision)