BRICS Cooperation Must Be Strengthened, Broadened – Russian President

Cooperation within the BRICS format is already yielding results and it is necessary to continuing strengthening it in various spheres, Russian President Vladimir Putin said in an interview with Sputnik and the IANS news agency.

“I think the cooperation within BRICS has already begun to yield practical results. It is essential to continue work on consolidating these results and on identifying areas of common interest,” Putin said.

According to the Russian president, there are currently over 30 different formats of BRICS inter-agency cooperation in the political, economic, humanitarian, security and law enforcement areas.

“The establishment of the New Development Bank (NDB) and the BRICS Contingent Reserve Arrangement with the total capital of $200 billion is a concrete example of this cooperation. I am convinced that, as the bank gets stronger, its output will only increase, including by means of projects that promote integration among the BRICS countries,” Putin said.

The Russian president recalled that the NDB has already approved projects in all five BRICS member-states.

“The priority at the current stage is renewable energy. In Russia, this implies the construction of small 50 MW hydropower plants in Karelia worth $100 million,” Putin explained.

He added that BRICS countries are also actively cooperating within the G20 format.

“Thus, the BRICS countries have undertaken a commitment to implement the Action Plan on Base Erosion and Profit Shifting. We seek to systematically converge our stances in the WTO [World Trade Organization] with a view to improving the rules and spurring up multilateral negotiations within the organization,” Putin said.

The Russian president will come to India for the BRICS summit due to be held on October 15-16 in Goa.

BRICS is an association of five developing economies which comprise over one third of the world’s population. BRICS member-states (China, Russia, Brazil, India and South Africa) have a combined nominal GDP equivalent to approximately 20 percent of the gross world product.