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GERD to generate electricity by 2015

Published: Apr 17, 2014 by bini Filed under: Ethiopian News
GERD to generate electricity by 2015

The Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) will start generating electricity in 18 months time with two of its sixteen turbines generating 375MW each, the Ethiopian Embassy in London has said.

The Deputy Director General of the GERD National Coordination Office, Mr Zadig Abraha, said that over the past three years, the sale of bonds to domestic investors had provided 7.1 billion birr ($367 million) towards the 27 billion birr spent so far. The total project will cost 75.5 billion birr.
Funding of the 6000MW hydropower project represents "the golden age of our history as far as economic development and public participation is concerned", said Abraha.

Any increase in Ethiopia's current generating capacity of 2000MW will allow the country to reduce its trade deficit by selling excess electricity - Ethiopia is already exporting power to Sudan and Djibouti, constructing a transmission line to Kenya and is in discussions with Yemen and South Sudan as well.

Once the GERD is finished and other hydropower projects, including the 1870MW Gibe III are online, Ethiopia could earn up to $2 billion a year from the export of power.

US aid to Egypt used for terrorism: Ethiopia official

Published: Apr 4, 2014 by bini Filed under: Ethiopian News Politics
US aid to Egypt used for terrorism: Ethiopia official

A Member of Ethiopia’s largest opposition party UDJ blamed Egypt’s financial assistance to al Shabab militants in Somalia for spreading terrorism in the horn of Africa. According to MP Girma Seifu of the Unity for Democracy and Justice (UDJ) party, American aid to Egypt is being diverted to finance terrorists in Somalia as Cairo seeks to weaken Addis Ababa and stop construction of the Ethiopian Dam.

“American taxpayers should demand answers from the Obama administration on why billions of their money is going to a country that funds terrorism in East Africa,” said Mr. Girma. According to a New York Times report on June 6, 2013, several Egyptian government officials were secretly taped discussing ways to increase funding for militants in East Africa in order to destabilze upstream Nile basin countries.

 MP Girma cited several United Nations (UN) weapons Monitoring Group’s evidence that show Egyptian arms support to Somali militants, some of whom have killed western tourists in East Africa. The UN document states that Egypt is also providing “intensive military and ideological training” to al Shabab, the same active group with terrorists like Abu Mansoor Al Amriki who was on FBI’s Most Wanted terror list.

Egypt: FM Meets UN Chief to Discuss Syria, Libya, Ethiopian Dam Crises

Published: Apr 4, 2014 by Babu2 Filed under: Ethiopian News
Egypt: FM Meets UN Chief to Discuss Syria, Libya, Ethiopian Dam Crises

Foreign Minister Nabil Fahmy met on Wednesday 2/4/2014 with the United Nations (UN) Secretary General Ban Ki-moon in Brussels to discuss Egypt's contribution to peacekeeping operations in a number of areas around the world.

Regional issues, such as the Syrian crisis, the situation in Libya and Ethiopia's Renaissance dam crisis, were also tackled in the meeting, said Foreign Ministry Spokesman Badr Abdel-Aati.

The meeting also took up developments in Egypt with the presidential election less than two months away, Abdel-Aati added.


Ethiopia lashes out at Eritrea, Egypt

Published: Mar 27, 2014 by bini Filed under: Ethiopian News Politics
Ethiopia lashes out at Eritrea, Egypt

ADDIS ABABA – An Ethiopian foreign ministry spokesman has lashed out at longstanding rival Eritrea, accusing the latter of destabilizing the East Africa region, while also blasting Egypt for the latter's "malicious" media campaign against Ethiopia's multibillion-dollar hydroelectric dam project.
"Eritrea's involvement in regional conflicts has been the case for long now," Ambassador Dina Mufti told foreign journalists at a weekly press briefing on Thursday.

According to Mufti, Eritrea has played a role in the ongoing conflict in South Sudan. "We have circumstantial evidence of Eritrea's involvement [in the South Sudan crisis]," the spokesman said. Tensions between Addis Ababa and Asmara have persisted since a bloody two-year border war – in which tens of thousands were killed – ended in 2000.

As for the row with Egypt over the Nile dam, Mufti said Cairo had launched a media campaign aimed at turning international opinion against the dam project.

"The project is a regional project," he said. "The project will not hurt the interest of Egypt. Rather, it benefits Egypt and other countries of the region."
Egypt's alleged media campaign, according to Mufti, "won't be in the interest of Egypt and [in the interest of] the people of Egypt."

Egyptian pope speaks on the construction of Ethiopian Dam

Published: Mar 24, 2014 by bini Filed under: Ethiopian News
Egypt's Coptic Orthodox Pope Tawadros II has said Field Marshal Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi has a "national duty" to stand for president in upcoming polls.

"Egyptians see him as a saviour and the hero of the 30 June revolution," Tawadros said during an interview with Kuwait's Al-Watan TV channel on Saturday.

 Tawadros also condemned the Arab uprisings, which began in Tunisia in late 2010 before spreading to Egypt, Syria, Libya, Yemen and Bahrain.

The uprisings "known as the Arab spring, were neither a spring nor an autumn," he said. "It was an Arab winter brought by malicious hands to our Arab region to break up its countries into smaller states."

Meanwhile, on the construction of Ethiopia's Grand Renaissance Dam, Tawadros claimed its negative impact would be felt in Egypt, Sudan and the whole African continent.

Egypt has voiced concern over the dam on the Nile river, which supplies most of its water needs.

Foreign ministry announces official stance on GERD

Published: Mar 19, 2014 by bini Filed under: Ethiopian News Politics
Egypt seeking agreement to ensure Ethiopia’s developmental needs, interests of Sudan, and Egypt’s water security, says ministry - See more at:

Egypt seeking agreement to ensure Ethiopia’s developmental needs, interests of Sudan, and Egypt’s water security, says ministry

Egypt seeking agreement to ensure Ethiopia’s developmental needs, interests of Sudan, and Egypt’s water security, says ministry - See more at:

Egypt is seeking to negotiate a “win-win” scenario with Ethiopia and Sudan over the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) that would protect the Ethiopia’s developmental needs, Sudan’s interests, and Egypt’s water security, according to a Foreign Ministry document released Tuesday.

The document, outlining the foreign ministry’s official stance towards the dam, detailed the Egyptian narrative of the GERD negotiations and listed the arguments of the Egyptian side.

The Egyptian side said Ethiopia continuing the construction process at the dam site “violates all the well-known international legal principles regarding projects and/or constructions on international rivers”, adding that it has broken a number of international agreements.

Among the agreements mentioned in the document was the 1902 agreement between Ethiopia and the British Government, where the Ethiopian side vowed not to construct or allow the construction of any work across the Blue Nile, Lake Tana, or the Sobat, which would arrest the flow of their waters except in agreement with “His Britannic Majesty’s Government and the Government of Sudan”.

According to the foreign ministry, the Ethiopian side also violated another agreement on the framework for cooperation with Egypt signed in 1993 where each party committed to “refrain from engaging in any activity related to the Nile waters that may cause appreciable harm to the interests of the other party.”

The document added that the Ethiopian side continues to build the dam disregarding the recommendations of the International Panel of Experts (IPOE) final report, which called for further studies in water resource systems, hydropower models, and a trans-boundary environmental and socioeconomic impact assessment.

The IPOE was composed of two experts each from Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan, along with four international experts. In the panel’s report the Ethiopian side did not share a number of documents, including the dam break analysis, cost benefit analysis, and others.

The report also mentioned that the present hydrological and reservoir simulation study shows detrimental impacts on Egypt’s water demand and the Aswan High Dam’s hydropower generation.
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