Stronger BRICS ties seen as key to world recovery

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Aerial photo taken on Dec. 17, 2020 shows the headquarters building of BRICS New Development Bank in east China's Shanghai. [Photo/Xinhua]

In the face of a sluggish global recovery from the COVID-19 hit, BRICS countries-Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa-should enhance cooperation and better safeguard people's lives to underpin a stable world economic recovery, China's Finance Minister Liu Kun said on Monday.

Liu made the remarks when chairing the Second BRICS Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors Meeting via video link in Beijing.

He said that with the protracted COVID-19 pandemic, the sluggish global economic recovery, complex and severe international situation, and global development suffering from disruptions, BRICS countries-as a positive, inspiring and constructive force to promote steady global recovery-should enhance cooperation and coordination to maintain the sound operation of the international economic and financial system and improve the global economic governance system and rules, according to a statement released after the meeting.

China is willing to work with other members towards deeper and richer cooperation over finance and elevate it to a new level, Liu said.

Yi Gang, governor of the People's Bank of China, China's central bank, also co-chaired the meeting. He stressed that financial cooperation is a critical part of the overall BRICS cooperation and that the PBOC is ready to deepen financial cooperation with member countries and strengthen macroeconomic policy coordination to promote global economic recovery and high-quality growth, according to a PBOC statement.

Zhou Mi, a senior researcher at the Chinese Academy of International Trade and Economic Cooperation, said that macro policy communication and coordination are of critical importance for the forthcoming global economic recovery because BRICS per se is one of the largest economies, and their steady recovery will be a critical anchor for global growth.

"As each member country is going through rapid changes and development, effective policy communication will help pool the efforts of all stakeholders and can avoid any waste of economic resources," Zhou said. "This will also generate positive results to countries and regions outside BRICS."

The meeting reached a consensus on the deliverables of BRICS financial cooperation for 2022. It also endorsed the Technical Report on Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) for Sustainable Development and welcomed the exchange and sharing of good practices and experiences among BRICS countries in infrastructure investment and PPPs.

It was also agreed at the meeting that sustainable finance is expected to play a significant role in boosting a steady global economic recovery and more cooperation should be seen in this regard.

The meeting announced the establishment of the BRICS Think Tank Network for Finance, which would facilitate research cooperation among think tanks in the finance area among BRICS countries.

Zhou said that while think tanks across BRICS member countries have existed for quite some time, a think tank network for finance, in particular, reflects the need for macroeconomic policy coordination among these countries.

"A think tank working on the financial front will also help forge an enabling environment for economic and industrial cooperation across BRICS countries," he said.

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