The Nile Basin Initiative Cooperative Framework Agreement

The treaty would create a legal basis for a permanent and common administrative institution, the Nile River Basin Commission (NRBC), which would be legally responsible and improve cooperation with the Nile. The NRBC will ensure that national development projects are coordinated with the development of the basin in order to optimize the use of basin resources and increase the national benefits of regional cooperation. The regional watershed management project aims to establish sustainable management of the Tekeze, Atbara, Mareb, Abbay/Blue Nile and Baro/Akobo/Sobat watersheds in Ethiopia and Sudan. Among the first sites identified are Lake Nasser/Nubia in Egypt; Jamma, Reb and Gumara sub-basin, as well as the Tana-Beles watershed as part of the Tana-Beles Integrated Water Resources Development Project in Ethiopia; and the lower atbara mountains, Ingessena and areas around Dinder National Park in Sudan. Joint Decision to Have More Time to Reach a Common Agreement The ICE Institutional Framework consists of three key institutions:[8] The 1929 and 1959 agreements have caused discontent in other Nile states and called for changes to the pact against which Egypt has opposed. The agreement between Egypt and Sudan, which complemented the previous agreement, gave Egypt the right to 55.5 billion cubic meters of Nile water per year and Sudan 18.5 billion cubic meters per year. The nine countries in the Nile Basin initiative were Burundi, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Egypt, Ethiopia, Kenya, Sudan, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda. Since then, South Sudan has been included in the initiative. Nearly two decades after its inception, the Nile Basin Initiative (NBI) transition mechanism has been attributed to the fact that it fulfills several components of its institutional project – and creates an atmosphere of trust and dialogue between the neighbouring countries. Nevertheless, the negotiations under the aegis of the NBI have not fulfilled one of the Organization`s most fundamental tasks: the establishment of a permanent legal framework and an “acceptable” institution for all States throughout the basin. The diplomatic undertaking that led to the adoption of the Watershed Cooperation Framework (CFA) agreement faced many challenges. I affirm that, despite the unprecedented summits in cooperative dialogues, widely presented as a “political triumph” from the point of view of the upstream, the legal and hydropolitical discourse that led to the final organization of the CFA has not allayed the “expectations” of two major states on stilts: Egypt and Sudan.

This was an existential threat to the institutional future of the NBI itself and to the noble goals it sought to achieve. Nevertheless, the organizational situation of the basin has also shown that the countries bordering the Nile have little choice but to revive the “declining” dynamic and ensure that the NBI`s commitment is concluded in an “inclusive” and “fair” manner.