The Ethiopian News Agency says Egypt's irrigation minister has toured the site in western Ethiopia where the country is building a controversial dam on the Blue Nile River.

The Ethiopian agency said Monday that Hossam El-Moughazi's visit Sunday marked the first time that an Egyptian official has been able to visit the site of the $4.2 billion hydro-electric project named the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam.

Egypt, Sudan and Ethiopia are currently holding talks aimed at reducing tension over the dam. Ethiopian officials have previously said they have arrested Egyptian citizens who allegedly entered the country illegally and tried to reach the site of the dam.

Egypt reportedly fears that the dam will diminish its share of the Nile, which provides almost all of the desert nation's water needs.