Ethiopian Dam Crisis: Agreement Reached Between Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan

Ethiopian Dam Crisis: Agreement Reached Between Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan

On March 23, 2015, Egypt's President Sisi, Sudan's President Al-Bashir and Ethiopia's Prime Minister Desalegn signed a preliminary deal to end the water crisis.
On March 23, 2015, Egypt’s President Sisi, Sudan’s President Al-Bashir and Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Desalegn signed a preliminary deal to end the water crisis.

Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan have signed an agreement aimed at curbing Egypt’s alarm at the speed of which the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (‘the dam’) is being constructed. The agreement is based on a preliminary agreement that had been reached in March 2015 between the leaders of the three countries in Khartoum, Sudan.

According to Egyptian state media, it was agreed that a French consulting firm would conduct research for a period between eight months and a year.

Ethiopia has also agreed to not fill the dam with any water from the Nile River until some sort of consensus has been reached between the three countries. The agreement also states that regular meetings will be held to solve other disagreements between the three countries and to respond to all Egyptian concerns regarding the filling of the dam with water.

The agreement, which was signed after talks between foreign ministers of the three countries in Khartoum, is obligatory and shows that the three countries hope to solve the issue diplomatically in a way that results in stronger bilateral ties, said an Egyptian Foreign Ministry source to Egyptian Streets.

History of the Ethiopian Dam Crisis

During the ninth meeting of the three countries in Cairo on 8 and 9 November, Egypt denounced the speed of the construction of the dam and the delay of studies into the impacts of the dam.

Egypt’s main concern since the start of construction of the dam in 2011 is its high storage capacity, which reaches 74 billion cubic meters, over fears of affecting its national water security.

As per agreements signed in 1929 and 1959, downstream countries Egypt and Sudan together receive the majority of Nile Water. Egypt annually receives 55.5 billion cubic metres of the estimated total 84 billion cubic meters of Nile water produced each year, while Sudan receives 18.5 billion cubic meters.

Egypt initially condemned the dam’s construction, stating that Ethiopia decided to build the dam without informing other countries that may be impacted.

Currently, approximately 55 percent of the dam has been constructed despite no studies into the dam’s impact. Egypt is not only concerned that the dam will impact Egypt’s water supply, but would also have impacts on the environment and security (for example, in the case of an earthquake or a terror attack). Moreover, Egypt has also expressed worry that the dam would impact the generation of electricity by the Aswan High Dam.

How far Egypt would go to protect its rights in the Nile River remains unclear. However, analysts say international arbitration is far more likely than a military incursion in the case where all diplomatic paths have failed.

Uber Partners with Egypt's Traffic Updates Application Bey2ollak for Smoother Rides
Controversial Egyptian Host Tawfik Okasha Banned from Television, Seeks Asylum in Germany

Subscribe to our newsletter


More in News


Egypt Court Releases Mother of Suez FGM Victim, Postpones Trial to November

Egyptian StreetsOctober 20, 2016
John Kerry

US Shifts Over $100 Million of Aid Away From Egypt

Egyptian StreetsOctober 20, 2016

Egypt’s Mediation Efforts Secure Evacuations, Delivery of Humanitarian Aid, Says Foreign Ministry

Egyptian StreetsOctober 20, 2016
A worker sells subsidized food commodities at a government-run supermarket in Cairo, Egypt, Feb.14, 2016 (Photo: Reuters)

Egypt to Consider Boosting Subsidies to Shield Low-Income Citizens from Hardships of Economic Reform

Egyptian StreetsOctober 19, 2016
An Egyptian supporter waves a national flag during the World Cup qualifying playoff second leg soccer match, at the Air Defense Stadium in Cairo, Egypt, Tuesday, Nov. 19, 2013 (Photo: AP)

Egypt to Reopen Stadiums to Soccer Fans for World Cup Qualifier

Egyptian StreetsOctober 19, 2016
Egypt's military prepares ahead of new operations against militants in Sinai

43 Terrorists Killed in Egypt Military Operations

Egyptian StreetsOctober 19, 2016
Archive photo

Police Conscript Shoots Dead Police Officer in Egypt Following Quarrel

Egyptian StreetsOctober 18, 2016
The Great Pyramid of Giza (Pyramid of Khufu)

Scans Uncover ‘Cavities’ in Egypt’s Great Pyramid

Egyptian StreetsOctober 18, 2016
Egyptian Streets is an independent, young, and grass roots news media organization aimed at providing readers with an alternate depiction of events that occur on Egyptian and Middle Eastern streets, and to establish an engaging social platform for readers to discover and discuss the various issues that impact the region.

© 2016 ES Media UG. All Rights Reserved.