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BRICS countries reach consensus on digital industry

By Ma Si and Cheng Yu | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2017-07-31 17:08

BRICS countries – a grouping acronym which refers to the countries of Brazil, Russia, India, South Africa and China – will step up cooperation in key industrial sectors, including information technology and intelligent manufacturing, as digital technology brings huge opportunities and becomes increasingly important in fostering economic growth, according to the ministers of the group in a statement released on Saturday.

China, Brazil, Russia, India and South Africa reached a consensus specifying emerging industries characterized by the internet, digitization and intelligence have deeply changed traditional business models, adding they would also be the new driving forces to the economy, according to the statement, released after the second meeting of the BRICS Industry Ministers concluded in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province.

Representatives of the countries said they would develop mechanisms for capacity cooperation, and promote deep cooperation in key sectors such as high-end manufacturing, shipbuilding, automobile and aircraft manufacturing. They also included some newly-emerged industrial areas such as next-generation information technology, biological and medical equipment, and new energy and new materials.

China's Industry and Information Technology Minister Miao Wei mentioned, as of this year, BRICS cooperation has entered into its second decade of operation.

"We are expected to fully take advantage of the BRICS mechanism, and join hands to cooperate in order to improve the industrial, economic and social development of BRICS countries," he said.

According to a plan in the statement, BRICS countries, which account for 23 percent of the global GDP in 2016, will boost dialogue mechanisms in industrial areas to explore effective technological, industrial and business cooperation modes in key areas, ensuring the industrial development strategy can be in sync with detailed industrial policies.

The plan also encouraged BRICS countries to enhance cooperation in infrastructure and technological innovation between institutions and organizations, as well as among national enterprises, research institutes and universities to gather more innovative resources.

In terms of standard cooperation, BRICS countries will encourage related government departments, standard organizations, enterprises and organizations in the industry to establish standards in intelligent manufacturing, additive manufacturing, robots and other new areas.

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