BRICS push for stronger partnership, brighter future?

BRICS push for stronger partnership, brighter future?

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(FILES) -- A file photo taken on October 3, 2013 shows South Africa President Jacob Zuma gesturing during the opening ceremony of the first national Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (B-BBEE) summit in Midrand. Zuma was October 22, 2013 left red-faced following a public backlash at comments labelling nearby Malawi as backward. While trying to convince motorists to accept a controversial plan to toll highways in and around Johannesburg, Zuma late October 21 said South Africans need to stop thinking like "Africans in Africa, generally." "We are in Johannesburg, this is Johannesburg. It's not some national road in Malawi," Zuma said during the ruling ANC party public forum on Monday evening. AFP PHOTO / STEPHANE DE SAKUTIN

The BRICS countries summit with representation of five more developing and emerging economies countries invited to be part of a mutually beneficial cooperation and achieve common development, financial cooperation and people to people cooperation has ended.

The BRIC platform – involving Brazil, Russia, India, and China – was set up in 2006 to foster closer cooperation on trade and other areas between major emerging markets.

South Africa joined the club in 2010, adding the “S”.

As the group enters its second decade, the expectation is an increased investment and cooperation between the BRICS countries.

In a press conference to close the Ninth BRICS 3-day summit in Xiamen in China, Xi Jinping focused on stronger cooperation among partners, people to people cultural exchange among participating countries and forging greater partnership as well as taking a centre role in global trade affairs.

Under theme “Dialogue of Emerging Market and Developing Countries” China sought the cooperation of another five developing countries to ensure that there is much closer and greater strategic partnership among these countries.

“We need to promote greater representation and voice of emerging markets and developing countries in global economic governance and foster an international economic order that is fairer and more equitable,” Xi adds.

 

BRICS Plus

These five additional countries – Tajikistan, Egypt, Guinea, Thailand and Mexico were brought on board to be part of the Ninth BRICS summit to participate in the original five BRICS countries to discuss global development cooperation and South-South cooperation as China proposed the model of “BRICS Plus.”

Xi notes that the emerging markets and developing countries combined have contributed more to global economic growth than others, accounting for 80 per cent of global growth in 2016, becoming the primary engine of the world economy.

Analysts say the US$44 billion “One Belt One Road Initiative” is another wheel that will drive BRICS to achieve its intention of advancing the hopes of a “just economic trade order” in ensuring development and reducing poverty.

Thailand, located in the land-and-sea intersection along the route of the “Belt & Road Initiative”, will undoubtedly become an important cooperation partner of China in the construction process. The Thailand connection is a key project linked to the China-proposed initiative with a multi-billion-dollar high-speed railway line.

Xi Jinping called on the leaders of emerging markets and developing countries to seize the opportunity arising from the adjustment of world economic structure.

In furtherance of this, the summit agreed on a road map that adds telecom, inclusiveness of the BRICS Plus for a diversified front.

 

Partnership

With the Presidency moving to South Africa and set to host next year’s summit in Durban, Xi Jinping said much significant progress has been achieved with members agreeing to forge stronger partnership amongst members for growth.

South Africa has already indicated its readiness to build on what China has achieved – the four pillars of BRICS to strengthen and deepen cooperation.

Triggered by the financial crisis of 2008, the leaders explained that BRICS must step up cooperation for equitable international order and constructive role in trade and South-South cooperation and an equitable economic order for a deeper economic cooperation and sustainable development.

In his closing remarks to the media in Xiamen, home to dozens of Hindu temples, China, President Jinping, also stressed on innovation, a new industrial reform for quality growth for all, more investments as well as in-depth cooperation for international security.

 

Financial Cooperation

Accounting for more than a quarter of the world’s economic output, the summit ended with China establishing a half-billion U.S. dollars to address public health, refugees and environment issues. The summit, a platform for bilateral diplomacy, analysts say when it comes to the question of infrastructure development and financial cooperation Africa is behind and its hoped that next year the South African Summit will take a good look at the situation in Africa as the continent has not benefited from BRICS since 2015.

President Jinping said he is confident that the expanded dialogue “will strengthen the solidarity and cooperation among emerging markets and developing countries and also contribute to the building of BRICS Plus mechanism.”

 

People to people

Xi says the summit also looked at institutionalizing people to people exchange regarding politics, think-tanks, and support efforts.

Opposing trade protectionism, the summit noted that members should view institutions building as moving forward for deeper and stronger mandate to ensure new ways for better, closer strategic partnership.

He said the dialogue of the emerging markets has sent strong message for south-south cooperation to inject new global energy.

Attended by 3000 journalists from all over the world, analysts say much remains to be seen on how everyone will be getting a piece of the pie without giving away the cheese.

Credit: Seibik Bugri, Yangling, China with additional files from China Global Television Network

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