Middle-east’s poplar media claims “Egypt has succeeded in obtaining a resolution from European, Russian and Chinese to stop financing” the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance dam.
The Dubai-based Al-Arabiya Arabic published the story yesterday – April 23, 2014. However, it is not picked by English language media yet.
The news makes further vague claims that:
“A formal decision made by the European Union, Russia, China, Italy and the World Bank to stop funding the construction of a dam, and the freezing of international loans to Ethiopia worth $ 3.7 billion, including a Chinese loan of one billion dollars.”
Ethiopia has maintained from the begging that the dam is fully financed from her own coffers, as international finance is not available due to Egyptian opposition. As the project, which is now 32% complete, have become a symbol of self-reliance, Ethiopian officials claim they are no longer interested in foreign funds. Addis Ababa recently rejected Egyptian officials suggestion that Cairo partake in the financing and ownership of the dam. However, the Chinese Export-Import bank has pledged to provide about $1 billion dollar for the power transmission lines works, which is not included in the about $4 billion dollar cost of the dam project.
Al-Arabiya Arabic however claimed that: “the budget of the dam is 250 million dollars, but the volume of works exceeded one billion dollars, which confirms that there is a hidden funding from countries seeking to bring water poverty in Egypt.”
Read below the news on Al-Arabiya Arabic –
An international decision to halt finance for the Ethiopian Renaissance dam
(based on two translation engines – further editing by Arabic-speaking HornAffairs associate)
After an arduous diplomatic battle, Egypt has succeeded in obtaining a resolution from European Russian, Russian and Chinese to stop financing the Ethiopian Renaissance dam, which, if completed, affects 20 per cent of the share of Cairo in the Nile waters.
A formal decision made by the European Union, Russia, China, Italy and the World Bank to stop funding the construction of a dam, and the freezing of international loans to Ethiopia worth $ 3.7 billion, including a Chinese loan of one billion dollars.
According to Egyptian diplomatic sources, that the budget of the dam is 250 million dollars, but the volume of works exceeded one billion dollars, which confirms that there is a hidden funding from countries seeking to bring water poverty in Egypt.
The sources pointed out that the battle continues diplomatically, legally and internationally to stop the construction of the dam completely and to force Ethiopia into complying with previously agreed plans.
The sources said that the rules of international law prohibits any international organization or state from contributing to the financing of any project on the river – either through a loan or grant aid or assistance – to harm the rights of other states.
The sources underlined the need for Egypt to complete the pressure on Ethiopia, especially with the possibility of hostile states could attempt to discourage the European Union and the World Bank on their position of refusing to finance the dam.
According to Dr. Mohamed Nasr El Din Allam, former Minister of Water Resources and Irrigation, the decision to stop funding the construction of the dam will force Addis Ababa to negotiate again with Egypt, stressing that the decision naturally, and was supposed to be taken since the beginning of negotiations with Ethiopia.
Does the battle end at this point? What can you do if you got Egypt Ethiopia to finance another from other countries and continued construction of the dam?
Dr. Shehata, water resources expert and former President of the University of Menoufia, said that if Ethiopia continues with the construction of the dam, the next step for Egypt should be resorting to the Security Council and the United Nations and also lodge a complaint at the International Court of Justice.
He explained that the terms of the financing of water projects is that the project shall not affect any other country in the Nile Basin.
He added that it is essential for Egypt to take advantage of this resolution and to continue to put pressure on Ethiopia to retrieve the original specifications for the dam that designed only 14 billion cubic meters water storage capacity rather than 74 billion cubic meters, which ensures no impact on Egypt’s share of Nile water.
Military option is the last card
Major-General Dr. Tarek Khader, former Governor of Damietta and head of the Department of Constitutional law at the Police College, ruled out a military option in the standoff, with the need to rely on diplomatic solutions and exert legal pressure on donors of Ethiopia.
He added that Ethiopia, and through construction of the dam, affect the water security of Egypt, and is a component of national security, so we must intensify pressure on donors ‘ political, diplomatic and legal actions to stop any funding.