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Wednesday, 30 May 2018

Shoukry, Sudan’s Al Dhikheri talk GERD, bilateral issues

Sudan, Egypt see eye-to-eye on GERD (until the next minor gaffe sends them backwards): Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry met with his Sudanese counterpart Al Dridiri Al Dhikheri in Cairo yesterday to discuss the latest developments related to the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), according to a ministry statement. Egypt and Sudan share similar viewpoints on the GERD issue, Shoukry told reporters after the closed-door meeting, according to Al Shorouk. Al Dhikheri also said that Khartoum is committed to overcoming the remaining sticking points over the dam, Ahram Gate reports. The statements come after Egypt, Sudan, and Ethiopia reached a breakthrough in negotiations over the dam during a meeting in Addis Ababa earlier this month, after months of souring ties.

Shoukry and Al Dhikheri also discussed Sudan’s blanket ban on imports of Egyptian agricultural products, which the ministers said “needs additional coordination and cooperation” to resolve. Reports had emerged last month that Sudan would lift the ban, which it had imposed back in May 2017, before Ramadan.

Egypt and Sudan’s planned electricity grid interconnection project also came up during the meeting yesterday. We could be signing the contracts for the USD 60-70 mn project in around a week’s time, Egyptian Electricity Holding Company head Gaber El Desouky had told us previously.

President Abdel Fattah El Sisi and Sudanese President Omar Al Bashir will meet in Khartoum in October to further discuss “pending issues” between the two countries, Al Dhikheri said, Al Shorouk reports. Al Dhikheri had met with El Sisi yesterday before his sit-down with Shoukry, according to Ittihadiya.

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