Nile Basin cooperation is “mandatory, not an option,” says Ethiopia

power transmission station01 March 2014, Addis Ababa – Ethiopia recently celebrated the 8th National Nile Day under the theme: “Access to Water and Energy National Challenges, Trans-boundary Solution.”

Ethiopia’s State Minister for Water, Irrigation and Energy State Minister, Kebede Gerba, said: “Fifteen years of Nile Basin cooperation has yielded results.

“But we still have a long way to go to completely relieve the community from the burden of poverty. It is self-evident that Nile Basin cooperation is mandatory, not an option.”

He said that future generations would benefit only from a win-win outcome achievable through sustained engagement and working together. Ato Kebede said “Building enduring regional cooperation and using all the necessary technical, institutional, organizational, financial requirements takes time; building trans-boundary cooperation and institution requires patience and working through disagreements.”

Nile Day, which was also regionally celebrated in Uganda, in the presence of Ministers in charge of Water Affairs in the 11 Nile Basin countries, diplomats, development partners, and government officials, is the annual celebration of the establishment of the Nile Basin Initiative (NBI) on 22nd February 1999, by Ministers in charge of Water Affairs in the Nile Basin countries. The Nile Basin Initiative is the first and only all-inclusive regional platform for the Nile riparian countries to discuss with trust and confidence the joint management and development of the common Nile Basin water and related resources.

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