Egypt and Sudan welcome UN’s support for mediation to solve GERD issue
- President El-Sisi highlights depth of strategic relations and ties with people of Nile Valley
- Egypt is supporting Sudan in light of the transitional phase it is going through, which requires other countries’ help to enhance its stability
CAIRO: Egypt and Sudan have welcomed the announcement by the UN secretary-general supporting the quartet mediation initiative to solve the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) issue.
According to a statement issued by the Egyptian Cabinet, the two countries are looking forward to Ethiopia’s approval of this formula.
Egypt affirmed its support for Sudan’s proposal on developing the negotiation mechanism sponsored by the African Union through the formation of an international quartet — led by the Democratic Republic of the Congo as the current president of the African Union, including the UN, the EU and the US — to mediate the negotiations.
This came during a meeting in Cairo with Abdalla Hamdok, the Sudanese prime minister, on an official visit to Egypt. A high-level delegation accompanied him.
The visit came as part of continuous consultations and visits between the two sides, the last of which was by the Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi to Sudan last Saturday.
President El-Sisi received Hamdok and confirmed the depth of the strategic relations and ties between the two countries and the people of the Nile Valley.
Egypt is supporting Sudan in light of the transitional phase it is going through, which requires other countries’ help to enhance its stability, development and democratic transformation.
The Egyptian and Sudanese leaders affirmed, through talks, their commitment to pushing forward bilateral cooperation in various fields.
Key areas of cooperation are expected in transferring Egyptian experiences in economic reform, training Sudanese cadres and moving forward with the implementation of the two electrical interconnection projects, raising the capacity to 240 megawatts during the coming summer, linking the railways and strengthening land, sea, river and air transport by restructuring the Nile Valley Authority for River Navigation.
They also discussed activating the permanent joint Egyptian-Sudanese technical committee, as well as developing cooperation in maritime navigation and benefiting from the countries’ ports on the Red Sea, and modernizing the services related to land transport with the aim of enhancing trade between them.
This is in addition to developing cooperation in investment, providing an environment for establishing joint investment projects, whether industrial or agricultural, and maximizing cooperation mechanisms in higher education, scientific research, gas, agriculture, livestock and food security.
The two parties also discussed working on holding the joint technical and commercial committee at the earliest opportunity and discussing ways to activate cooperation in the field of small and medium enterprises.
They are likely to focus on transformative food industries and the meat industry and agreeing to exchange visits by businessmen from the two countries, and finalizing the area designated for the establishment of an Egyptian industrial zone in Sudan.
They also agreed to activating memoranda of understanding and protocols concluded between the two countries and discussing joint projects with the aim of following up on the time plan for their implementation or completing the existing ones.
The two sides emphasized the importance of reaching a binding legal agreement on the filling and operation of the GERD in a way that achieves the interests of the three countries and limits damages to the two downstream countries.
The two countries also affirmed that they have the political will to achieve this goal at the earliest possible opportunity.
They also called on Ethiopia to engage in an effective negotiation process to reach an agreement.
The two countries also welcomed the leadership of the Democratic Republic of the Congo in the negotiations.