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BRICS Summit 2023 (Special)

  • Category
    International Relations
  • Published
    25th Aug, 2023


The Prime Minister of India is in Johannesburg, South Africa to attend the 15th BRICS summit going to held from August 22 to August 24, 2023.

History of BRICS:

  • The term BRIC was first introduced in the 2001.
  • 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.

BRICS Organization:

  • BRICS is an acronym for the grouping of the world’s leading emerging economies, namely Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa.
  • The chairmanship of the forum is rotated annually among the members, in accordance with the acronym B-R-I-C-S.
  • India has the chair BRICS in 2021.

About the summit 2023:

  • Theme of the summit: "BRICS and Africa: Partnership for mutually accelerated growth, sustainable development and inclusive multilateralism".
  • Presidency of: South Africa
  • Significance:
  • BRICS summit is crucial due to recent events: Russian invasion of Ukraine impacting global stability, food, fertilizer, and energy security.
  • Counter-Western Slant: With BRICS having a "counter-western" perception, discussions gain significance as the S. and EU seek to isolate Russia.
  • Leadership Dynamics: Summit marks Lula's return to power in Brazil, highlighting a shift towards socialist and anti-western politics compared to Bolsonaro's presidency.

15th BRICS Summit: Top agendas for the meeting

  • Expansion of BRICS nations: Leaders of the BRICS group of developing nations have invited Saudi Arabia, Iran, Ethiopia, Egypt, Argentina and the United Arab Emirates to join, in a move aimed at growing the clout of a bloc that has pledged to champion the "Global South”.
  • Discussion on Dollar dominance: The group will also discuss reducing the dollar's dominance, and several BRICS nations have already begun their trade in local currencies.
  • Trade by BRICS nations: It surged by 56 per cent to reach 422 billion dollars in the past five years.
  • In these transactions, New Development Bank, earlier known as BRICS Development Bank, will work as a medium for such transactions.
  • India’s proposals:
  • India proposed the idea of setting up a bank at the 4th BRICS in 2012 held in Delhi.
  • India's proposed for permanent G20 membership to African Union gets support from BRICS.
  • India is according "highest priority" to the issues of countries of the Global South under its G20 presidency.

Why BRICS organisation is important?

  • BRICS is a group of emerging economies comprising;
  • 41 per cent of the world population and
  • 24 per cent of the GDP, and
  • More than 16 per cent share in world trade.
  • At present, BRICS denote the group of fastest-growing economies (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) that would collectively dominate the world economy by the year 2050.

India and expectations from BRICS

  • BRICS Summit Significance: The BRICS summit holds special importance for India as the first in-person meeting after the 2020 India-China standoff.
  • Leaders' Face-to-Face: Prime Minister Modi and President Xi Jinping's face-to-face interaction at BRICS allows for bilateral discussions amid ongoing tensions.
  • LAC Situation and Bilateral Talks: The meeting is an opportunity to address the LAC situation and possibly resolve tensions, with 1,00,000 soldiers stationed at the boundary.
  • Cooperation and Diplomacy: India seeks cooperation from China and Russia to address issues like the G20 summit's declaration and hopes to strengthen ties within the BRICS group.

Initiatives of BRICS till now:

  • New Development Bank: During the Sixth BRICS Summit in Fortaleza (Brazil) in 2014, the leaders signed the Agreement establishing the New Development Bank (NDB - Shanghai, China).
    • It has so far approved 70 infrastructure and sustainable development projects worth.
    • Contingent Reserve Arrangement: In 2014, the BRICS governments had signed a treaty on the setting up of the contingent reserve arrangement
    • The arrangement is aimed at forestalling short-term balance of payments pressures, provide mutual support and strengthen financial stability of the BRICS nations.
    • BRICS Payment System: BRICS countries are trying to create a payment system as an alternative to the SWIFT payment system.
    • This has taken on a new urgency as post Ukraine war, Russia has been frozen out of SWIFT.
  • Customs Agreements: Customs agreement were signed to coordinate and ease trade transport between BRICS countries
  • Launched of Remote Sensing Satellite: A Remote Sensing constellation of satellites has been launched – with 6 satellites including 2 from India, 2 from China, 1 from Russia, and 1 Brazil-China collaboration

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