BRICS Summit

The BRICS summit was held at Ufa, Russia, on 8-9 July 2015. The grouping includes India, Russia, China, Brazil and South Africa.

Leaders of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa finally launched the group’s largest initiatives to date—a development bank and a currency pool—and called for a swift deal on curbing Iran’s nuclear programme.

The five countries also condemned terrorist activities of the Islamic State of Iraq and Levant (ISIL) and associated terrorist groups, and said there should be no “political approaches” and “selective application” in dealing with terrorism. They also insisted that all countries should adhere to their obligations of fighting against the menace.

In the declaration, China and Russia also said that they support the aspirations of India, Brazil and South Africa for permanent membership of the UNSC.

Criticising “double standards,” the BRICS nations promised to work closely with the UN to uphold international treaties.

The BRICS countries also rallied behind Russia by opposing the Western sanctions against Russia over the Ukraine conflict.

The BRICS also adopted an “Action Plan” that maps the 2016 trajectory of the group—the Russia-proposed “Strategy of BRICS Economic Partnership,” a blueprint for the group’s trade, investment and commerce ties up to 2020. Among other things, it will be aimed at increasing the competitiveness of BRICS countries in the global economy.

The BRICS summit also slammed the United States for blocking reforms of the international financial architecture—a move, which analysts say, helped persuade China to form the AIIB. “We remain deeply disappointed with the prolonged failure by the United States to ratify the IMF 2010 reform package, which continues to undermine the credibility, legitimacy and effectiveness of the IMF,” said the Ufa declaration.

The group also issued a statement on the conflict in Ukraine, calling for full implementation of an agreement reached in February on ending fighting between pro-Russian separatists and pro-Kiev forces in east Ukraine.

The five foreign ministries also signed an agreement on creating a joint BRICS website, which will act as a virtual secretariat of the group.

The Central Banks of the five countries also signed cooperation agreements with the New Development Bank.

Pitching for closer cooperation and coordination among BRICS nations, Prime Minister Narendra Modi proposed a 10-point initiative—calling it ‘Das Kadam: Ten Steps for the Future—that includes India hosting the first trade fair for the grouping and establishing research centres for railways and agriculture.

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