Egypt has firmly rejected the Ethiopian proposal to delay discussions on disputed points in Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) negotiations until a technical committee is formed.
On Friday, technical and legal teams from Egypt, Sudan and Ethiopia, all of whom are involved in negotiations on the Ethiopian dam, held separate meetings in the eighth consecutive day of meetings tackling disputed points related to the filling of the Ethiopian dam.
Egypt had stressed that the disputed points, which is says are essential, cannot be delayed to meetings to be held after an agreement is signed.
During the Friday meeting, Egypt suggested alternative proposals to bring views closer regarding procedures for dealing with drought and prolonged drought and years of water scarcity. This would be addition to certain proposals related to rules regarding the annual operation and refilling of GERD reservoir.
During the technical committee meeting, the parties agreed that Ethiopia will study an Egyptian proposal that is to be discussed during the ministerial meeting on Sunday.
Negotiations are expected to last until 13 July on both the technical and legal levels.
On Thursday, delegations representing the three countries agreed to send three separate “Factual Reports” on the talks, presenting each country’s viewpoints, to South Africa, the current rotational president of the African Union (AU).
On Saturday, the delegations are set to meet with the international observers separately. On Sunday, a meeting involving Ministers of Water Resources and Irrigation from Egypt, Sudan and Ethiopia, is set to be held hoping for a consensus.
The AU’s Assembly Bureau and representatives from AU member states, the US, and the European Union are also participating in the meetings.
Negotiations on the Ethiopian hydroelectric dam remain stalled due to Ethiopia’s rigorous stance regarding technical issues on the GERD, which decreases the chances of agreement on the project, according to Egyptian officials.