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Ethiopia and Egypt are at rival over the construction of the Ethiopians Renaissance Dam.
Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn turned down the idea by Eygpt for World Bank arbitration in a dispute over a hydroelectric dam Addis Ababa is building along its share of the Nile. With discussions deadlocked for months over the wording of a study on its environmental impact, Egypt’s Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry proposed late last month that the World Bank be allowed to help settle the dispute.
In a statement by Hailemariam he said that “Seeking professional support is one thing, transferring (arbitration) to an institution is another thing. So we told them that this is not acceptable with our side.” The agency, which spoke to Hailemariam upon his return from Cairo on Friday, said he rejected the proposal and said: “It is possible to reach agreement through cooperation and with the spirit of trust.”
After his meeting with the Ethiopian leader, Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi pledged not to let differences over a construction of the dam ruin relations with Addis Ababa. Countries that share the river have argued over the use of its waters for decades – and analysts have repeatedly warned that the disputes could eventually boil over into conflict.
The Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam is now 60% complete will churn out 6,000 MW upon completion.
Under a new 2015-2020 development plan, Addis Ababa wants to raise power generation to 17,346 MW from a current capacity of just over 4,300 MW from hydropower, wind and geothermal sources.