Water from Ethiopia against drought
Ethiopian legislators have ratified an agreement to provide neighbouring Djibouti with underground water from the country’s underground Shinile Zone of the Bekuli Rift Valley free of charge, in a bid to fight drought and famine.
The two governments signed the agreement on January 20, 2013, reaching a consensus to develop Ethiopia’s Somali region’s underground water. The deal in fact gives “full and exclusive rights” to Djibouti to draw 103,000 metric cubes of underground water every day, a total of 37 million metric cubes annually, for the next 30 years.
According to Africa Report, Djibouti will spend $399 million towards the drilling of holes and other related expenses. Under the accord, Djibouti’s government will also pay compensation to residents of Shinile, Ali Sabih, Dilhil and Ara that will be affected by the project.
The wide majority of Addis Ababa legislators approved the project, which Ethiopian authorities argue is in line with the country’s Constitution that encourages the promotion of economic ties with its neighbors. [VG/BO]