SA: BRICS Ministers recommit to implement agreements

BRICS Foreign Affairs Ministers have unanimously agreed to implement the resolutions of the Johannesburg summit, while deepening practical cooperation and realising mutually beneficial win-win results.

The Ministers, who recently met on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA73) in New York, took stock of the July summit and underlined the progress achieved by BRICS throughout the multi-dimensional and inclusive cooperation fostered by the bloc’s leaders.

The Johannesburg summit saw the adoption of the Johannesburg Declaration, which, among others, supported an open and inclusive multilateral trading system.

The leaders also found common ground in championing global trade, condemning protectionist measures, the fight again terrorism, intra-BRICS trade and fighting climate change.

“They expressed satisfaction with the many fruitful results of intra-BRICS cooperation in the areas of the economy, finance, peace, stability and people-to-people exchanges, in particular the establishment of the New Development Bank (NDB), including its Africa Regional Centre in Johannesburg; the Contingent Reserve Arrangement (CRA); the formulation of the Strategy for BRICS Economic Partnership; BRICS Action Agenda on Economic and Trade Cooperation and the BRICS Agricultural Research Platform (ARP),” reads the communique issued after the meeting.

The Ministers welcomed the constitution of the BRICS Energy Research Cooperation Platform, the upcoming establishment of the Americas Regional Office of the NDB in São Paulo, the BRICS Partnership on New Industrial Revolution (PartNIR), and the BRICS Vaccine Research and Development Centre.

The Ministers looked forward to the early and full operationalisation of all these BRICS initiatives.

They used their meeting to exchange views on current issues of global significance in political, security, economic, financial and sustainable development spheres, as well as the three-pillar intra-BRICS strategic cooperation.

On the economy, the Ministers emphasised the importance of an open and inclusive world economy enabling all countries and peoples to share the benefits of globalisation.

They underlined their firm commitment to free trade, and the centrality of a rules-based, transparent, non-discriminatory and multilateral trading system (MTS), as embodied in the World Trade Organisation (WTO).

They opposed the new wave of protectionism and the systematic impact of unilateral measures that are incompatible with WTO rules and undermine global trade, and economic growth.

In this regard, they reiterated that the WTO Dispute Settlement System is the cornerstone of the MTS, as it is designed to enhance security and predictability in international trade.

On world peace and stability, the Ministers reinforced their commitment to upholding multilateralism and to working together on the implementation of the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals, as they foster a more representative, democratic, equitable, fair and just international political and economic order.

“The Ministers reiterated BRICS commitment to multilateralism and a rules-based international order and in this regard, reaffirmed the centrality of UN, WTO and international law. The Ministers pledged their support to efforts towards making global governance more representative with greater participation of emerging markets and developing countries in global decision making,” the communique said.

The Ministers’ meeting touched on other areas that are mutually beneficial such collaboration in ICT, cooperation to mitigate climate change, while expressing views on hotspots such as the Middle East, North Africa, Israel and Palestine.

The Ministers reaffirmed the importance of BRICS people-to-people exchanges in promoting common development and enhancing mutual understanding, friendship and cooperation amongst its peoples.

They commended the ongoing exchanges and the steady progress in BRICS, including in the fields of sports, youth, film, culture, education, tourism and governance.

They supported further BRICS people-to-people exchanges and cooperation in fostering a meaningful resonance of the BRICS partnership amongst its peoples.