15th BRICS Summit 2023

Short view on 15th BRICS Summit 2023


The 15th BRICS Summit, hosted by South African President Cyril Ramaphosa, has garnered significant attention due to its geopolitical and geoeconomic context. BRICS comprises Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa.

  • This summit holds increased importance in light of recent events, particularly the war in Ukraine, which has created geopolitical instability.


15th BRICS Summit 2023

Key Points About BRICS Summit 2023:


The summit marks a significant moment as it is the first in-person gathering since the COVID-19 pandemic disrupted the previous summit in 2019.

The pandemic's remnants affected China in 2022, leading to a virtual summit that year.

Additionally, the Russian invasion of Ukraine in 2022 has added a layer of complexity to global stability, including food, fertilizer, and energy security.

BRICS discussions are often seen with a "counter-western" perspective, and this summit holds significance as the U.S. and EU seek to isolate Russia due to the conflict.


Indian Context:

For India, the summit carries unique importance. It's the first in-person summit since the 2020 military standoff with China along the Line of Actual Control.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Xi Jinping will interact within a small group, presenting opportunities for bilateral talks.

The recent joint statement from India-China Corps Commander Level Meeting indicates positive steps towards resolving the LAC situation.

 Prime Minister called for a strengthened BRICS that will be:

B - Breaking barriers

R - Revitalising economies

I - Inspiring Innovation

C - Creating opportunities

S - Shaping the future


The government of India highlighted the following:

  •  Called for setting defined timelines for UNSC reforms
  • Called for reform of Multilateral Financial Institutions
  • Called for reform of WTO
  • Exhorted BRICS to build consensus on its expansion
  • Urged BRICS to send a global message of unity and not polarisation
  • Proposed creation of a BRICS Space Exploration Consortium
  • Offered Indian Digital Public Infrastructure - the Indian stack to BRICS partners
  • Proposed undertaking skill mapping, skilling and promoting mobility among BRICS countries
  • Proposed joint efforts of BRICS countries for protection of Big Cats under International Big Cat Alliance
  • Proposed establishing a repository of traditional medicine among BRICS countries
  • Called upon BRICS partners to support AU’s permanent membership of the G20

Aim & Theme:

The summit aims to address various global issues, such as the expansion of BRICS, intra-BRICS trading in national currencies, and global developments.

South Africa's theme for the summit, "BRICS and Africa: Partnership for Mutually Accelerated Growth, Sustainable Development, and Inclusive Multilateralism," focuses on climate change, the African Continental Free Trade Area, and women's participation in peace processes.


Leaders from BRICS countries, including Narendra Modi, Xi Jinping, and Brazilian President Lula, will deliberate on the "Johannesburg Declaration." However, Russian President Vladimir Putin's absence is notable due to an ICC warrant against him. BRICS has extended invitations to African Union members and other leaders from developing countries to promote economic cooperation.


While the summit could explore matters like a "BRICS currency" and global initiatives, the focus seems to remain on economic issues. India's engagement is essential as it faces critical challenges with China at the LAC and seeks to promote cooperation within the BRICS framework.


Overall, the BRICS Summit of 2023 assumes greater importance given the shifting geopolitical landscape and the need to address economic and global challenges collectively.


About BRICS:

BRICS is an acronym that represents a group of five major emerging economies: Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa. The term was originally coined by Goldman Sachs in a report in 2001 to highlight the significant economic potential of these countries. Over time, BRICS has evolved into a formal alliance for cooperation and dialogue among its member nations.

Here are the basic points about BRICS:


1. Member Countries: BRICS consists of five member countries - Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa. These countries span different continents and have diverse economic, political, and cultural backgrounds.


2. Economic Focus: BRICS countries are characterized by their large and fast-growing economies. They are collectively considered to be major players in the global economy and are among the world's largest economies by GDP.


3. Cooperation and Dialogue: BRICS serves as a platform for member countries to engage in discussions, collaboration, and mutual support on a range of issues, including economic development, political cooperation, and global challenges.


4. Annual Summits: BRICS holds annual summits where leaders from member countries gather to discuss various issues of mutual interest. These summits provide an opportunity for high-level diplomatic engagement and decision-making.


5. Geopolitical Influence: BRICS countries collectively wield significant geopolitical influence and represent a significant portion of the world's population. They often work together to advocate for their interests and viewpoints on global matters.


6. New Development Bank (NDB): One of the notable achievements of BRICS is the establishment of the New Development Bank, also known as the BRICS Bank. The NDB provides funding for infrastructure and sustainable development projects in member countries and other emerging economies.


7. Contingent Reserve Arrangement (CRA): Another key initiative is the Contingent Reserve Arrangement, which is a financial safety net designed to provide member countries with the ability to access emergency funds to address balance of payments problems.


8. South-South Cooperation: BRICS represents a form of South-South cooperation, where countries from the global South come together to address common challenges and promote shared development goals.


9. Diverse Agenda: While economic cooperation is a primary focus, BRICS discussions also cover a wide range of topics, including political coordination, global governance reform, security matters, technological collaboration, and cultural exchanges.


10. Voice in Global Affairs: BRICS provides its member countries with a collective platform to voice their perspectives on global issues, which may differ from those of traditional Western powers. This often leads to a more balanced and inclusive discourse in international relations.


11. Share of BRICS Nations: Together, BRICS accounts for about 41% of the world’s population and about 24% of the GDP (Gross Domestic Product), 16% of the global trade.


Overall, BRICS is a significant geopolitical and economic alliance that brings together five major emerging economies to collaborate, discuss common challenges, and promote their interests on the global stage.


UPSC Prelims PYQ on BRICS:


Que. Consider the following statements: (UPSC 2016)


1.       New Development Bank has been set up by APEC.

2.       The headquarters of New Development Bank is in Shanghai.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?


a)       1 only

b)      2 only

c)       Both 1 and 2

d)      Neither 1 nor 2


Answer (b)


The New Development Bank (NDB) was set up by the BRICS Development Bank.

The NDB is headquartered in Shanghai, China.


Solve: MCQ on BRICS Summit 2023

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about BRICS along with their Answers:


Q1: What is BRICS?

BRICS is an acronym that stands for Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa. It represents a group of major emerging economies that come together for dialogue, cooperation, and collaboration on various global issues.


Q2: When was BRICS established?

The term "BRIC" was originally coined by Goldman Sachs in 2001. The first formal BRICS summit took place in 2009 when South Africa joined the group, turning it into BRICS.


Q3: What is the purpose of BRICS?

BRICS serves as a platform for member countries to discuss and collaborate on economic, political, and developmental matters. It aims to promote mutual understanding, cooperation, and joint initiatives among its diverse member nations.


Q4: How often do BRICS summits occur?

BRICS summits are held annually, providing leaders of member countries with an opportunity to meet and discuss various issues of common interest.


Q5: What are some key achievements of BRICS?

BRICS has established institutions like the New Development Bank (NDB) to fund infrastructure projects and the Contingent Reserve Arrangement (CRA) to address financial stability. The group also engages in discussions on global governance, economic development, and security.


Q6: Is BRICS solely focused on economic matters?

While economic cooperation is a significant aspect of BRICS, the group also engages in discussions related to political coordination, security concerns, global governance reform, and cultural exchanges.


Q7: How does BRICS impact global politics and economics?

BRICS countries represent a substantial portion of the world's population and economic output. Their collaboration influences global discussions, provides an alternative perspective to Western powers, and promotes balanced international relations.


Q8: What is the role of the New Development Bank (NDB) in BRICS?

The NDB, established by BRICS countries, aims to provide funding for sustainable development projects in member countries and other emerging economies. It supports infrastructure and environmentally friendly initiatives.


Q9: How has the geopolitical landscape affected BRICS discussions?

Global events such as conflicts, economic challenges, and geopolitical shifts have influenced BRICS discussions. The group often addresses these developments and their implications for member countries and the world.


Q10: How does BRICS contribute to South-South cooperation?

BRICS represents a form of South-South cooperation, where countries from the global South collaborate on common challenges and developmental goals, promoting a more inclusive and equitable global order.


Q11: What is the significance of the BRICS Summit in the context of the 15th edition?

The 15th BRICS Summit carries special importance due to its timing in a dynamic geopolitical environment, global challenges like the COVID-19 pandemic, and member countries' collaborative efforts to address emerging issues. It provides an opportunity for leaders to discuss key matters and enhance cooperation.


Q12: How does the BRICS Summit impact the member countries' bilateral relations?

The BRICS Summit allows member country leaders to engage in face-to-face discussions, strengthening bilateral relations and creating opportunities for constructive dialogues on various bilateral and global issues.


Q13: What are some common topics discussed at BRICS summits?

Topics often discussed at BRICS summits include economic cooperation, political coordination, security challenges, global governance reform, sustainable development, technological collaboration, and cultural exchanges.


Q14: Is BRICS open to new member countries?

Yes, BRICS has shown openness to expansion. Several countries have expressed interest in joining, and some have formally applied for membership. However, new member inclusion is subject to consensus among existing members.


Q15: How does BRICS impact the global economic order?

BRICS challenges the traditional dominance of Western powers by representing a significant portion of the world's economic activity. It contributes to a more multipolar global economic landscape and promotes cooperation among diverse economies.


These FAQs provide a comprehensive overview of BRICS and its role in the global arena, covering its purpose, achievements, significance, and impact on various aspects of international relations and development.

Reference: TH

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