China to provide USD 76 million for BRICS economic initiative

From left, Brazil’s President Michel Temer, Russian President Vladimir Putin, Chinese President Xi Jinping, South Africa’s President Jacob Zuma and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi pose for a group photo during the BRICS Summit at the Xiamen International Conference and Exhibition Center in Xiamen, southeastern China’s Fujian Province, Monday, Sept. 4, 2017 (AP Photo) Related News

China will provide USD 76 million for a BRICS economic and technology cooperation plan and another USD 4 million to support the projects of the bloc’s New Development Bank, President Xi Jinping announced Monday. Calling on the five nation grouping to forge unity to jointly advance solutions for international peace and development, Xi said the BRICS countries should make economic globalisation open and inclusive, and beneficial to all.

“I wish to announce here that China will launch the economic and technical cooperation plan for BRICS countries with 500 million yuan [about USD 76 million at the current exchange rates] for the first term to facilitate policy exchange and practical cooperation in economic and trade field,” Xi said at the opening of the plenary session at the BRICS Summit in Xiamen.

Prime Minister along with other leaders of the BRICS countries participated in the meeting. Xi also said China will contribute USD four million for the New Development Bank (NDB) setup by the BRICS countries.

The money was meant for project preparation facility to support the business operation and long-term plans of the bank, he said. “We need to make the international order more just and equitable. Our ever closer ties require that we five countries play more active in global governance. Without our participation, many pressing global challenges cannot be effectively resolved,” he said.

On the broader future role for BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa), Xi said the grouping should speak in one voice and jointly present solutions to issues concerning international peace and development. “This meets the expectation of the international community and will help safeguard our common interests,” he said.

“We should remain committed to multilateralism and basic norms governing international relations, work for new type of international relations and foster peace and stable environment of all countries,” Xi said. He said the BRICS countries should build open economy, support multilateral trade regime and oppose protectionism.

“We need to advance the reform of the global economic governance, increase the representation and voice of the emerging markets and developing countries and inject new impetus to advance efforts to address the development gap between north and south and boost global growth,” he said. Xi said the grouping should endeavour to promote practical economic cooperation.

Despite the achievements the bloc has made, the potential for cooperation has yet to be fully unleashed, Xi said. The five countries’ foreign investment totalled USD 197 billion in 2016, but only 5.7 per cent took place between BRICS members, he said.

The BRICS countries should increase cooperation in sectors such as trade and investment, monetary and financial areas, connectivity, sustainable development, innovation and industrial cooperation, he said. Outlining the progress of the BRICS, he said the group of emerging economies launched African regional centre of the New Development Bank.

The BRICS countries also decided to setup BRICS model of e-port network and reached extensive agreements on taxation, e-commerce, local currency bond, public private partnership, the network of financial institutions and services. He also called for promoting more closer ties between people of the BRICS countries.

“Amity between the people holds the key to sound state-to-state relations. Only with the intensive care can the tree of friendship and cooperation grow,” he said. “The job well done in this regard will keep the BRICS cooperation vibrant. He said the important consensus reached at the leadership level to promote people-to-people exchanges is being translated into reality.

He said the past decade has seen the unremitting efforts of the BRICS countries in pursing development and deepening partnership. It is beginning in the history of BRICS cooperation, he said.

“Looking ahead BRICS cooperation is set to achieve greater development and play even a bigger role in international affairs,” he said. He called on the member nations to join hands to “usher in a second golden decade of BRICS cooperation and deliver greater benefits to the people of five countries and around the world”.

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