Sun. May 26th, 2024

Ethiopia to build more than 100 dams

Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed said that Addis Ababa intends to build more than 100 small and medium-sized dams in different regions of the country. Abiy Ahmed indicated that more than 100 small and medium-sized dams are scheduled to be built in an effort to boost agricultural production and ensure the country is food secure.

Abiy said that this is “the only way to resist any forces opposing Ethiopia.” The PM stressed the need to achieve the announced plan, noting that all the spectrums of Ethiopian society must join forces to achieve these aspirations and other development programmes.

“Ethiopia will transform and prosperity will emerge in the coming years,” he stressed, adding that “unity is crucial.” Ethiopia is building a $5 billion dam near the border with Sudan it says will provide the country with much-needed electricity and economic regeneration. Egypt believes it will restrict its access to Nile waters.
Egypt is almost entirely dependent on Nile water, receiving around 55.5 million cubic metres a year from the river, and believes that filling the dam will affect the water it needs for drinking, agriculture and electricity.

Cairo wants Ethiopia to guarantee Egypt will receive 40 billion cubic metres or more of water from the Nile. Ethiopian Irrigation Minister Seleshi Bekele said Egypt has abandoned this demand, but Egypt insists it hasn’t and issued a statement to this effect. There is also an unresolved issue over how fast the dam will be filled, with Egypt fearing if it is filled too quickly, it could affect the electricity generated by the Aswan High Dam.

In other case, a water expert said Swift action is critical for the realization of the historic plan to develop 100 small and medium-scale dams in the country. Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed announced recently that Ethiopia will build over 100 small and medium-scale dams in various regional states in the upcoming Ethiopian fiscal year. The premier noted that the new dams will boost agricultural production, which is expected to triple, and ensure food security as “the only way to resist forces opposing Ethiopia.”

In an exclusive interview with ENA, Senior Water Expert Feqahmed Negash said the commitment of the government to construct small and medium-scale dams has to be appreciated. However, he added that swift action is critical to translate the plan into deeds.

According to Feqahmed, water is one of the most important resources in Ethiopia and it can promote economic growth, social development and sustainable environment.

So, it is very important that the government started giving big attention to the development of this sector, he stated.

“It is a big step in the Ethiopian history that the government officially came out to state that they have a plan to start injecting huge resources, not only financial but political commitment, to construct small and medium-scale dams for various purposes,” the snior expert stressed. Commenting on the Egyptian reaction that followed the announcement, Feqahmed said “I will not be surprised by the Egyptian reaction.”

He further stated that this is actually part of the Egyptian strategy to make sure that the Government of Ethiopia is discouraged from taking any action in the country. Thus this is not surprising and should not be taken as a new issue.

“It is important to realize that it is the sovereign right of the Government of Ethiopia and the people of Ethiopia to utilize the resources of the country within its territory in a manner that can contribute to the socio-economic development of citizens,” the expert underlined.

Ethiopia is rightly called the water tower of Africa due to its combination of mountainous areas with a comparatively large share of water resources in Africa. Only a fraction of this potential has been harnessed so far.

Sources: Middle East Monitor and ENA

By Chala Dandessa

I am Lecturer, Researcher and Freelancer. I am the founder and Editor at ETHIOPIANS TODAY website. If you have any comment use as email contact. Additionally you can contact us through the contact page of

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