20 October 2019 05:11 AM

PM: Egypt will preserve its rights to Nile water

Wednesday، 09 October 2019 - 02:41 PM

Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouli said on Wednesday 9/10/2019 that the Egyptian State, with all its institutions, is committed to preserving its historical rights to the Nile water.

Addressing a general session of the House of Representatives, he added that dialogue is still open for reaching a solution to the issue of the Ethiopian dam in a way that will not harm the Egyptian rights to the Nile water.

The statement by the premier was aimed at explaining to the MPs all aspects related to the issue of the controversial Ethiopian dam and the Egyptian efforts in this regard.

Madbouli said that he is reassuring the Egyptian people that the Egyptian State will preserve its rights to the Nile water while offering all support to Ethiopia and Sudan for rendering the current talks successful.

Prime Minister Madbouli said that Egypt has exerted much effort for dialogue with Sudan and Ethiopia since the latter announced unilaterally its plans to build the renaissance dam.

He added that the dam is an issue of concern to the three countries but Ethiopia announced its plans on the dam in 2011 when Egypt was passing through difficult time.

He noted that the Ethiopian side has adopted harsh stances on the points of agreement that had been approved by the three countries that are related to the time of filling the dam's reservoir and its operation.

According to the declaration of principles that was signed by the three countries in 2015, if the three countries did not reach an agreement on the dam, there should be an international mediator who would study the issue and outline bases and criteria that achieve the interests of the three countries, he pointed out.

When Egypt asked for an international mediator, Ethiopia called for more negotiations with the consultancy houses, he added.

The Ethiopian side announced the start of experimental operation of the dam in early 2020, said Madbouli, adding that this is why he attended the parliament's session to explain all aspects related to the issue.

The Prime Minister said in his statement at the House of Representatives that Egypt is not against any development project that serves any of its fellow Nile Basin countries.

Egypt has participated in and funded many development projects in the Nile Basin countries including dams such the huge Julius Nyerere Dam in Tanzania that is implemented by Egyptian companies, he pointed out.

The Ethiopian dam implementation steps started in 2011 when Egypt was suffering from political turmoil and unrest, said the Egyptian premier.

The Egyptian government, according to directives by President Abdel Fattah El Sisi, started the implementation of projects for the management of the Egyptian water resources until the year 2037, he said.

These projects included shifting into modern methods of irrigation and treatment of sewage water along with sea water desalination, he noted. In less than three years these projects cost the Egyptian government around 110 billion pounds, said the premier.

He added that these projects were meant to prove to other Nile Basin countries that Egypt is willing to cooperate so that they would implement their own development projects.




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