The European Union (EU) regrets that Ethiopia has announced the second filling of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), without reaching a prior agreement with downstream partners on this issue.
Unilateral actions, by any party, are unhelpful to finding a negotiated solution. A jointly agreed clear roadmap is urgently needed, setting out the timeframe and specific aims of the negotiations for talks to resume as soon as possible, and to continue on a regular basis thereafter. The EU continues to call on the parties to resume negotiations.
Working closely with the United States and the United Nations, the EU, as an observer, stands ready to continue to support the African Union-led talks, which need to be intensified. The EU is ready to play a more active role, if useful and desirable to all parties, putting forward its rich experience in the management of shared water courses.
With political will and support from the international community, an agreed outcome of this dispute could be turned into an opportunity for many people. Over 250 million citizens of the Blue Nile Basin stand to benefit from an agreement on the GERD which would create predictability, and open the door for foreign investments in energy, food security and water security.