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Building mutual trust, brick by BRIC
(China Daily)
Updated: 2009-06-16 07:30

China expects to strengthen mutual strategic trust and coordinate its standpoint over the financial crisis when leaders of the four BRIC nations (Brazil, Russia, India and China) meet in Yekaterinburg, Russia, Tuesday.

"Cooperation among the BRIC countries will be essential in helping with the world's economic recovery," Deputy Foreign Minister He Yafei told a press conference last week before Chinese President Hu Jintao's departure from Beijing.

China hopes the four countries will broaden their consensus and enhance their mutual trust, Wu Hailing, director of international affairs of the Foreign Ministry, said Monday in a press conference.

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Although global economic crisis and reforms in international financial institutions top BRIC summit agenda, the leaders will also discuss issues on food, energy and climate change.

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev told national security advisors of BRIC countries at a Kremlin meeting late May that the exchange would be constructive for the "development of the four nations, global security and ensuring economic, food and energy security".

Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said Monday the world's economic recovery was "closely linked" to the success of the BRIC economies.

Building mutual trust, brick by BRIC

"The BRIC summit in Yekaterinburg opens a new stage in political dialogue and diplomatic interaction between our four countries," Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva said Monday in an interview with the Russian news agency RIA Novosti.

"BRIC countries are playing an increasingly prominent role in international affairs, and are showing their readiness to assume responsibilities in proportion to their standing in the modern world," he added.

BRIC leaders will also explore their future dialogues at the summit while reviewing the Heiligendamm process, an initiative that will institutionalize high-level dialogue between the G8 and the five most important emerging economies - China, Mexico, India, Brazil and South Africa - known as the "Outreach Five" - and the establishment of a common G5 + G8 platform at the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development.

Pang Zhongying, an international relations expert at the Renmin University of China, said the BRIC Summit has a "substantial and substantive" significance as "a new-born non-Western cooperation framework between the four biggest emerging economies of the world", creating a reasonable balance against the dominance of developed countries.

Building mutual trust, brick by BRIC

"The imbalance of the world's economic and political order would finally result in a crisis. The world should applaud the cooperation among BRIC countries as it builds up influence to represent the due interests and rights of the developing countries," Pang said.

"BRIC countries will need to build up trust through dialogue to pave the way for close cooperation in future so as to amplify their shared voice", Pang added.

Zhou Zhiwei, Secretary-General of the Center for Brazilian Studies with the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, said all four countries share the same interest in reforming the international financial system under the current circumstances.

"They can also talk about combating trade protectionism, another common concern," Zhou said, but added it's still "too early" to discuss whether BRIC could form a group of nations.

BRIC nations account for 42 percent of the world's population and enjoyed an average annual economic growth of 10.7 percent from 2006 to 2008.

According to Goldman Sachs, which created the acronym BRIC, the four nations have contributed one-third of the world's growth since 2000.