US urges Ethiopia to sign Nile dam deal

The United States has urged Ethiopia to sign in the shortest possible time a deal with Egypt and Sudan about the giant dam it is building on the Nile.

According to Steven Mnuchin, the US treasury secretary, the final testing and filling of the dam should not take place without an agreement.

The government of Ethiopia has expressed disappointment over the statement.
Ethiopia as the owner of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam will commence first filling of the dam in parallel with the construction of the GERD in accordance with the principles of equitable and reasonable utilization and the causing of no significant harm as provided for under the Agreement on the Declaration of Principles (DoP).

“Ethiopia does not accept the characterization that the negotiation on the Guidelines and Rules on the First Filling and Annual Operation of the GERD (Guidelines and Rules) is completed,” the Ethiopian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Water, Irrigation and Energy on Saturday said in a joint statement.

Last week Ethiopia failed to attend what was meant to be the final signing of an accord. Egypt and Sudan fear the $4bn dam will deprive their populations of water.

The Grand Renaissance Dam is at the heart of Ethiopia’s manufacturing and industrial dreams. When completed it is expected to be able to generate a massive 6,000 megawatts of electricity.

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