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Egypt wants World Bank to help on Ethiopia dam impasse

Egypt fears the construction will cut into its water supply and destroy precious farmland [Getty]

Date of publication: 26 December, 2017

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Egypt says the World Bank should be brought in to resolve tensions with Ethiopia over a massive dam on the Nile River that Egypt says threatens its water security.
Egypt says the World Bank should be brought in to resolve tensions with Ethiopia over a massive dam on the Nile River that Egypt says threatens its water security.

Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry spoke on Tuesday in Addis Ababa after a 10-month impasse over the dam's technical negotiations. The talks also involve Sudan.

Shoukry calls the World Bank "neutral and decisive" and says "science should be the determining factor" in resolving the issue.

Ethiopia says the Grand Renaissance Dam's construction will not reduce Egypt's water share.

Foreign Minister Workneh Gebeyehu says Ethiopia will consider Egypt's proposal and that "this dam is not going to cause any significant harm."

Ethiopia's leader is expected to visit Egypt next month.

The dam, now 63 percent complete, will be the biggest hydro-electric plant in Africa.

Egypt fears the construction will cut into its water supply and destroy precious farmland. Dam construction on international rivers often lead to disputes over the downstream impact.

The Nile provides over 90 percent of Egypt's water supply.

It already receives the lion's share of Nile waters - more than 55 billion of the around 88 billion cubic meters of water that flow down the river each year.

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