BRICS Annual Summit

News: Recently, the Prime Minister chaired the annual summit of the BRICS which was held virtually. The theme for the Summit was ‘BRICS@15: Intra-BRICS cooperation for continuity, consolidation and consensus’.

What is BRICS?

  • BRICS is an acronym for the grouping of the world’s leading emerging economies, namely Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa. In 2001, the British Economist Jim O’Neill coined the term BRIC to describe the four emerging economies of Brazil, Russia, India, and China.
  • The grouping was formalised during the first meeting of BRIC Foreign Ministers in 2006.
  • South Africa was invited to join BRIC in December 2010,after which the group adopted the acronym BRICS.
  • The BRICS brings together five of the largest developing countries of the world, representing 41% of the global population, 24% of the global GDP and 16% of the global trade. The chairmanship of the forum is rotated annually among the members, in accordance with the acronym B-R-I-C-S. India is the chair for 2021.
  • During the Sixth BRICS Summit in Fortaleza (Brazil) in 2014,the leaders signed the Agreement establishing the New Development Bank (NDB – Shanghai, China). They also signed the BRICS Contingent Reserve Arrangement to provide short-term liquidity support to the members.

Highlights of the latest summit:

  • Our Prime Minister highlighted the achievement of several new initiatives during India’s Chairmanship this year (2021),e., an Agreement on cooperation in the field of remote-sensing satellites; a virtual BRICS vaccine Research & Development Centre; BRICS Alliance on Green Tourism, etc.
  • Highlighting the leading role that BRICS countries can play in the post-Covid global recovery, Prime Minister called for enhanced BRICS cooperation under the motto of ‘Build-back Resiliently, Innovatively, Credibly and Sustainably’.
  • BRICS Counter Terrorism Action Plan which defines the approach and actions of the BRICS countries towards areas of Counter Terrorism cooperation which includes: Countering Radicalization and Online Terrorist Threats, Border Management, Information/ Intelligence Sharing, etc.
  • Delhi Declaration which called for reforms of the principal organs of the United Nations including that of the UN Security Council (UNSC). It is the first time that BRICS has taken a collective position on ‘Strengthening and Reforming Multilateral Systems’.
  • It also called for an “inclusive intra-Afghan dialogue” for stability in Afghanistan.
  • Apart from Afghanistan, the BRICS leaders also took up the conflicts in Myanmar, Syria, the tension in the Korean peninsula, Israel-Palestine violence and other territorial disputes.
  • Noted the proposal made by India and South Africa at the World Trade Organisation (WTO) for the waiver of the Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) mechanism to ensure a rapid expansion of the Covid-19 vaccine production around the world.