By Bilal Derso
The two consulting firms chosen to conduct studies on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) have been carrying out their operations as per schedule, according to Ministry of Water, Irrigation and Electricity.
Water, Irrigation and Electricity Minister Dr. Eng. Sileshi Bekele stated that the firms have been conducting their studies since last month and the study is progressing according to schedule.
“The three countries would meet soon to monitor the progress of the study,” the minister said, adding that the two firms are expected to complete their studies and submit the report within 11 months.
The Tripartite National Technical Committee of Ethiopia, Sudan and Egypt agreed the French BRL, the main firm to conduct 70% of the study, while the other France-based Artelia sub-contracting 30 % of the task.
The consulting firms were selected to conduct two studies on the possible socio-economic impact of the dam on lower riparian countries.
Meanwhile, Office of the National Council for the Coordination of Public Participation on the Construction of GERD announced its plan to collect 1.8 billion Birr from various fund raising programs as part of the 6th anniversary of the commencement of the dam.
The office noted that the stated sum would be secured from bond sells, GERD trophy tours, SMS, lottery sale, among others.
Ethiopians home and abroad have so far made a 9.6-billion Birr contribution for the 6,450MW hydro-power project, the office stated.