Leaders from BRICS nations, representing a quarter of the global economy, met in Johannesburg, South Africa, eying expansion and deepening cooperation. Chinese President Xi Jinping said emerging countries are becoming more and more relevant in the international arena, and this summit will very much contribute to the shaping of a new global economic and political order.
Xi said when addressing the 15th BRICS Summit that development is an inalienable right of all countries, not a privilege of a few countries.
BRICS countries should be peers on the road of development and revitalization, oppose acts of “decoupling” and disrupting industrial and supply chains, as well as economic coercion, and focus on practical cooperation in such areas as digital economy, green development, supply chain, among others, Xi said.
He also called for the speedy expansion of BRICS as well as efforts to promote more just and reasonable global governance, Global Times reported.
“It is unacceptable to package one’s own rules and regulations as international norms,” Xi said, noting that international norms should be written and upheld by all countries based on the purposes and principles of the UN Charter, rather than dictated by those with the strongest muscles and loudest voice.
Xi, Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and South African President Cyril Ramaphosa began talks over dinner at a luxury estate in suburban Johannesburg on Tuesday night, ahead of the summit’s main day of discussions on Wednesday, the AP reported. Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov represented Russia in person, while Russian President Vladimir Putin participated in the dinner discussions virtually.
The leaders weighed rules for admitting new members to BRICS on Wednesday, as more than 40 countries have expressed interest in joining, and of them, nearly two dozen have formally asked to be admitted, Reuters said. Also, the leaders will discuss reducing the use of dollars for trade at the gathering on Wednesday, some media reported.
When the leaders kicked off this year’s BRICS summit with the Business Forum on Tuesday, Wang Wentao, Chinese Commerce Minister, read out a speech from Xi, which underscored the importance of inclusive development, universal security, cultural exchange, and the collective rise of emerging economies and developing countries for a better world.
Xi expressed China’s willingness to deepen solidarity and cooperation with other emerging markets and developing countries to make the international order more just and equitable.
“Emerging countries are becoming more and more relevant in the international arena. This summit will very much contribute to the shaping of a new global economic and political order. It will help change the current situation when it comes to international relations,” he said.
By Zanib Sabahat Ali