BRICS summit evades India's issue with Pakistan
India had to face disappointment as the UN Security Council resolution 1267 did not surface anywhere in the BRICS Declaration at the 7th BRICS Summit in Russia. The resolution dealt with action against Pakistan for the release of the 26/11 mastermind Zaki-ur Rehman Lakhvi. The BRICS members condemned the terrorist activities of the Islamic State of Iraq and Levant (ISIL).
What is BRICS?
BRICS is the acronym given for a federation of 5 rising national economies: Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa respectively. Its first summit was held in Yekaterinburg (Russia) in 2009.
What Africa, SA stands to gain from BRICS?
South African President Jacob Zuma confirmed a 70% increase in South Africa's total trade from R268 Bn in 2011 to R382 Bn in 2014 with BRICS nations. BRICS' New Development Bank, or BRICS bank, is crucial to Africa as it will be the driving force to build Africa's infrastructure. Moreover, BRICS can facilitate the infrastructure programme by providing skills and expertise.
NDB ready for official launch
One day before the 7th BRICS summit, BRICS New Development Bank (NDB) board of governors held their 1st meeting in Moscow. The legal framework was wrapped up, preparing for the official launch of the $100 billion bank at the summit. The NDB is being presented as a 'financing alternative' to the World Bank and one where the BRICS nations will have more autonomy.
Support to Russia by the BRICS nations
Russia spoke to the 5 nation grouping, bringing them abreast with the ongoing battle with the blocks imposed over them over the Ukrainian conflict. Russia found validation in BRICS nations condemning "unilateral military interventions and economic sanctions in violation of international law". This position of BRICS seemed to also corroborate the grouping's support to Iran.
Strength of the BRICS grouping
The BRICS countries together make up almost 3 billion of the world population, committing almost 40% to the global GDP and 18% to the world trade.
Modi calls for deeper cooperation among BRICS
Prime Minister Narendra Modi pitched for stronger and deeper cooperation between BRICS nations. In a subtle attack on the west, which has put sanctions against Russia over the Ukraine crisis, he said that the "unilateral sanctions" were affecting the global economy. Speaking about the BRICS New Development Bank, he said that it should sponsor projects which have 'cross-border collaboration' among the 5 member countries.