MOSCOW, June 23. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin will take part in the 14th summit of the BRICS group (Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa) that will take place via video conference on Thursday.
According to the Kremlin press service, the China-hosted meeting will focus on political, economic, cultural and humanitarian cooperation. There also are plans to discuss pressing global and regional issues.
The group’s expansion is expected to be one of the main topics on the agenda. In May, China suggested launching discussions of the issue and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said that Argentina and Saudi Arabia had expressed interest in joining BRICS. According to experts, other potential candidates include Bangladesh, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Uruguay who joined the BRICS New Development Bank last year. In addition, analysts point out that events held on the sidelines of the BRICS foreign ministers meeting involved representatives of Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Nigerian and Thailand.
Ways to reduce the role of the US dollar in financial transactions between member states will be another focus of attention. The Russian president stated earlier that together with other BRICS nations, Moscow was working on alternative mechanisms of payment. Putin emphasized that Russia’s financial messaging system was open for banks from other BRICS countries to join. According to Putin, efforts are underway to create an international reserve currency based on the basket of BRICS currencies and Russia’s Mir payment system is expanding its global presence.
On June 24, the Russian president will address a BRICS+ meeting that will also involve the leaders of a number of other countries.
The acronym BRICS, derived from the initial letters of the names of the group’s members, was created in December 2010, when South Africa joined the organization that had earlier been known as BRIC. The goal of the group, established at Russia’s initiative in 2006, is to boost comprehensive cooperation between member states. China is holding the BRICS presidency in 2022.