New Zealand Supports AU led Trilateral Talks over GERD

ADDIS ABABA – New Zealand supports the African Union led talks between Ethiopia, Egypt and Sudan over the grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), said its top envoy in the East African nation.

New Zealand’s Ambassador to Ethiopia and AU, Michael Apton said this during his discussion with Habtamu Itefa (Dr.-Eng), Water and Energy Minister of Ethiopia, on various issues on Friday.

“We believe that the negotiations between the three countries through the African Union regarding the GERD  will yield results and we support that,” said Ambassador Apton.

Ethiopia has rejected repeated attempts by Egypt and Sudan to involve the US, EU and the UN in negotiations as mediators over the dam, insisting it was an African issue that must be dealt with inside the continent.

Support to Zero Carbon Target

In a statement, the ministry also said the ambassador Apton announced his country’s plan to provide financial support to the African Union member states to achieve the goal of zero carbon emissions in the future.

Ethiopia is one of the countries, it said.

Habtamu on his part told the Apton more than 4 billion seedlings have been planted in the past two years under the leadership of Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed.

This move will help to ensure the safety of water bodies in the country, including the Nile River, on which Ethiopia is building a multibillion dollars dam.

The Minister also explained the benefits of the Renaissance Dam to Sudan and Egypt, during the meeting the two sides agreed to work together on renewable energy development, Water and Sanitation.