King Abdullah of Jordan and President Assad of Syria have agreed to to speed up measures to build a US$400M dam on the Yarmouk river and to jointly seek financing for the project. Planning for the dam, to be located on the border between the two countries, was started in 1987 but was abandoned after relations between the two countries soured when Jordan signed a peace agreement with Israel.

  Israel has objected to the dam, as Yarmouk is a tributary of the Jordan river which flows through Israel (see IWP&DC, December 1997, p-2). The dam was originally designed to store 225M m3 of water. Water from the dam is to be used by Syria for irrigation and by Jordan for drinking.