Foreign and Military Affairs

BRIC has growing world influence

By Dong Jidong and Ai Yang (China Daily)
Updated: 2010-04-16 08:13
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Beijing - Leaders from Brazil, Russia, India and China attending the two-day BRIC summit that commenced on Thursday in Brasilia, believe it is time to raise their voice and have a greater say in world affairs.

There is a consensus among the four countries that they need to form strong ties to better participate in international affairs and the governance of the global economy.

"The emerging powers, whose group rise is one of the world's major trends, have amplified their influence over international political and economic affairs amid the financial crisis," Chinese Ambassador to Russia, Li Hui, said.

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"I think what we need to look at now is to find a greater voice in the management of international financial institutions, such as the World Bank and the IMF," said B.S. Prakash, Indian ambassador to Brazil. The Ambassador said the BRIC still lacks decision-making power.

"Although our economies are growing, although they are large, we do not have the representation, we do not have the voice, we do not have the decision-making power", explained the ambassador.

Chinese Ambassador to Brazil Qiu Xiaoqi said the emerging countries represent a new concept for international relations, and called for more exchanges and cooperation on the basis of equality and mutual benefit.

BRIC cooperation is a "strong counterweight to established powerhouses in economic and political terms", Reuters quoted an unnamed senior official at India's finance ministry on Wednesday as saying. Meanwhile China's vice Foreign Minister stressed the aim of the summit is to "seek mutual benefit" and not to confront third parties.

Only the second summit of BRIC leaders, it will focus on a range of pressing global issues from economic recovery and reform of the international financial system, to climate change and multilateral cooperation.

However, the BRIC countries will not repeat the mistakes of the past and will pay attention to the needs of the so-called "G172", the countries that do not belong to the G20, said secretary-general of Brazil's Ministry of Foreign Affairs Antonio Patriota.

Li Yang, vice president of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, said the four countries share similar positions on issues concerning the reforms of international organizations, such as the IMF and the World Bank. Li suggested BRIC countries could use their own currencies in trade with each other and promote currency swaps among themselves.

"The combined contribution of BRIC countries to world economic growth exceeded 50 percent over the past five years." Li said. "BRIC countries should and can reinforce and expand cooperation, because we are all developing countries and share the common historical tasks and interests."

With regard to the climate change issue, he said that the BRIC countries need to further expand cooperation through the exchanges of concrete technologies in such areas as clean energy, forest protection, improvement of energy efficiency and so on. As major emerging markets, BRIC countries account for 42 percent of the world's population, 14.6 percent of the world's GDP and 12.8 percent of global trade.

Xinhua contributed to story.

China Daily