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An Ethiopian official said that a USD 2.8 million study has been launched to develop the Baro-Akobo-Sobat sub-basin, which stretches across Ethiopia and South Sudan, for hydropower generation.
“The study incorporates power generation and sale, irrigation, basin rehabilitation as well as wetland management,” Fekahmed Negash, Executive Director of the Eastern Nile Technical Regional Office (ENTRO) said.
He said funds for the study have been secured from the African Development Bank and African Water Facility.
“The study will take 21 months to complete,” he said.
According to Negash, the study will also included researches on the trans-boundary implications of the projects that are meant to be developed on the Nile Basin and ensures cooperation among the riparian countries.
The Ethiopian official, meanwhile, said that Egypt was showing signs of returning to the Nile Basin Initiative.
Egypt and Sudan withdrew from the initiative after five upstream countries signed the Cooperative Framework Agreement (CFA) in 2010, also known as the Entebbe Agreement, with a view to increase their access to Nile water.
Last month, Ethiopia, Egypt and Sudan signed a Declaration of Principles in Khartoum on the controversial dam project that is being built by Ethiopia on the Nile.
For several months, Ethiopia’s multibillion-dollar dam project had been at the center of a diplomatic row between Cairo and Addis Ababa.
While Ethiopia views the project as necessary to its economic development, Egypt fears it could lead to a marked reduction in its historical share of Nile waters.