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 You are in: Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs > Bureau of Public Affairs > Bureau of Public Affairs: Press Relations Office > Press Releases (Other) > 2005 > March
Fact Sheet
Office of the Spokesman
Mexico City, Mexico
March 10, 2005


Water Debt

Secretary Rice announced in Mexico City that "In the spirit of effective bilateral cooperation, I am pleased that we have reached a mutual understanding on the transfer of a sum of water that will cover Mexico's debt to the United States under our 1944 Water Treaty, thus ensuring continued cooperation in the management of precious natural resources to the mutual benefit of both economies."

Mexico ended the prior two water accounting cycles (1992-2002) with a cumulative deficit of over 1.3 million acre-feet (A/F). As of October 1, 2004, the deficit had been reduced to 716,670 A/F.

We have reached agreement in principle with Mexico on a plan whereby Mexico will provide sufficient water to cover the outstanding deficit no later than the end of September 2005. This water is in addition to the minimum annual average of 350,000 A/F required under the treaty.

An exchange of diplomatic notes will formalize the understanding of the two governments in this regard. Mexico has met the minimum average volume required under the treaty in the first two years of the current water accounting cycle (2002-2007), and as of February 26 had delivered 125,840 A/F to be applied to the treaty requirement for year three of the current cycle. We anticipate Mexico will deliver an additional 224,160 A/F of water from the measured treaty tributaries before the third year closes at the end of September.

2005/T3-2

Released on March 10, 2005

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