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The Tripartite Committee of Ethiopia, Sudan and Egypt kicks off its meeting 5th round meeting here in Addis Ababa on Wednesday. It is expected to to select an international firm that that will carry out technical studies on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) in its. The international firm will take between five and 12 months to conduct studies on the dam.

Sindiso Ndema Ngwenya is the fifth Secretary-General of the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) since it was transformed from the PTA in 1994. Before his appointment as Secretary General, Ngwenya was the Assistant Secretary General of COMESA in charge of Programs a position he held for ten years. In this position, he was responsible for overseeing the development and implementation of COMESA programs. In addition, he oversaw and supervised the operations of COMESA established institutions such as the Leather and Leather Product Institute (LLPI), the Clearing House and the Regional Investment Agency. In this exclusive interview with Addis Standard in connection with the 20th year anniversary of the birth of COMESA, Ngwenya describes the journey so far, the challenges and opportunities. Excerpts: