Demographic growth in Egypt, with a population that increases by about two million inhabitants each year, is the main challenge given the scarcity of water in the country, which is supplied by the Nile River, said representatives of the Government and international institutions.
In the presentation of the First Water Week in Cairo, which will take place next October, the Egyptian Minister of Water Resources, Mohamed Abdelati, stressed that “water is the most important pillar of national security ".
The ambassador of the European Union in Egypt, Ivan Surkos, assured that the country is one of the most scarce of water in the world, with a deficit of 20,000 million cubic meters each year, according to EU data.
The director of the Water Sector of the European delegation in Egypt, Ayman Ayad, stressed that thepopulation growth and climate changeo represent the main problems, in addition to the lack of coordination between official Egyptian institutions and limited legislation in the water sector.
Ayad added that there is little coverage in rural areas and that some 45 million people, out of the country's 95 million inhabitants, do not have an adequate sanitation system.
The head of the Regional Initiative for Water Scarcity of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), Pasquale Steduto, told Efe that the main factor behind the scarcity is the use of water for agriculture, to which around 85% of the total is allocated.
To cover "the daily food needs of each person are necessary about 3,000 liters of water " irrigated, he detailed.
Steduto added that in Egypt"There is not enough water" to produce all the food it consumes, for which it is forced to import about 50% of it, and now it is rethinking its agricultural strategy to save water.