Moscow, March 22 (IANS) With the annual BRICS summit in Durban next week, Russian President Vladimir Putin pointedly said that the BRICS countries, home to nearly half the world’s population, are a key element of the emerging multipolar world and they “do not accept power politics”.
BRICS is an economic bloc representing five of the world’s leading emerging economies – Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa. The BRICS summit is scheduled for March 26-27 in Durban, South Africa.
“BRICS is a key element of the emerging multipolar world. The Group of Five has repeatedly affirmed its commitment to the fundamental principles of the international law and contributed to strengthening the United Nations central role. Our countries do not accept power politics or violation of other countries’ sovereignty,” Putin told ITAR-TASS news agency in an interview made available to IANS.
He said that there are a number of long-term factors working for BRICS’ success.
“For the last two decades, the economies of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa have been in the lead of global economic growth. Thus, in 2012, the average GDP growth rate in the group amounted to four percent, while for the G7 this was estimated at 0.7 percent. In addition, the GDP of the BRICS countries derived from the national currency purchasing power parity is currently over 27 percent of the global GDP and its share continues to increase,” he added.
A UN report said the combined output of BRICS countries will surpass the aggregate GDP of the US, Canada and European nations by 2020.
“By 2020, the combined economic output of three leading developing countries alone – Brazil, China and India – will surpass the aggregate production of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, the United Kingdom and the United States,” the United Nations Development Programme’s 2013 Human Development Report said.
Putin said that BRICS’ “credibility and influence in the world is translated into its growing contribution to the efforts to stimulate global development. This important matter will be specifically addressed at the BRICS Leaders-Africa Dialogue Forum to be held on the sidelines of the Durban summit”.
On economic ties, the Russian president said that BRICS members advocate the creation of a more balanced and just system of global economic relations.
“The emerging markets are interested in long-term sustainable economic growth worldwide and reforms of the financial and economic architecture to make it more efficient. This is reflected in last year’s joint decision to contribute $75 billion to the IMF lending programme, thus increasing the participation of the fastest growing economies in the Fund’s authorised capital,” he said.
According to one estimate, the BRICS countries are likely to account for over 50 percent of global consumption by the middle class – those earning between $16 and $50 per day – by 2050.
Putin went on to say that last year’s Delhi Action Plan outlined 17 areas of cooperation, including meetings of foreign ministers on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly session, joint meetings of finance ministers and central bank governors on the sidelines of the G20, World Bank and International Monetary Fund meetings, as well as contacts between other agencies.
“We are currently negotiating a new plan we will discuss at the meeting in Durban. I am confident that it will help us develop a closer partnership. We expect that we will be able to closer coordinate our approaches to key issues on the agenda of the forthcoming G20 summit in St Petersburg, increase our cooperation in the fight against drug trafficking and production, and our efforts to counter terrorist, criminal and military threats in cyberspace,” he said.
It is of great importance for Russia, said Putin, to increase its trade and investment cooperation with its BRICS partners and launch new multilateral business projects involving our nations’ business communities.
“In Durban we intend to announce the formal establishment of the BRICS Business Council designed to support that activity. The summit will be preceded by the BRICS Business Forum, which will bring together more than 900 business community representatives from our countries.”