The final technical GERD negotiation ended with disagreement. Sileshi Bekele Water, Irrigation and Energy Minister of Ethiopia said that it was unsuccessful because of Egypt’s unexpected deal.
The minister said that it looks like the Egypt team came to Addis Ababa, deciding to disagree. ‘We have observed that there was an attitude from the Egyptian side that the dam is not necessary.”
“Egypt created a new timeline of filling the dam which takes a period of 12 to 21 years, and that’s not acceptable,” he added. This deal was never raised during the previous technical meetings.
On the other side, Ethiopia and Sudan accepted the previous timeline of filling the dam.
When it comes to drought management, if drought happens Ethiopia agreed to release up to 35bn cubic meters of water from the dam. ” but Egypt occupied on the filling timeline so this issue could not be concluded,” said Sileshi.
Ethiopia made technically clear that it will start filling the dam starting July 2020 based on the agreed timeline.
On January 13, the foreign ministers of the three countries will meet in Washington to finalize the negotiation.