Xi calls on BRICS to preserve multilateralism

By Rabi Sankar Bosu
0 Comment(s)Print E-mail China.org.cn, July 31, 2018
Adjust font size:

Chinese President Xi Jinping, accompanied by Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, reviews the guard of honor during a grand welcome ceremony in Abu Dhabi, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), July 20, 2018. Xi arrived here on Thursday for a state visit to the UAE. [Photo/Xinhua]

On July 27, 2018 the emerging-market bloc of BRICS, which comprises Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, concluded their 10th annual summit in Johannesburg, South Africa, reaching consensus on the international situation, global governance and cooperation among the five countries at a time of global uncertainty.

Running from July 25 to 27 under the theme of "BRICS in Africa: Collaboration for Inclusive Growth and Shared Prosperity in the 4th Industrial Revolution," the summit saw the signing of a joint declaration on July 26, featuring 102 individual commitments. 

BRICS Plus cooperation 

Certainly, this year's multi-national BRICS meeting was significant as it represented the de-facto ascension of the BRICS Plus cooperation which was adopted in last year's Xiamen summit. The presence of state leaders and related officials of Angola, Argentina, Botswana, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Egypt, Gabon and 16 other nations demonstrated BRICS inclusiveness, confidence and openness. 

It can be said that the Johannesburg summit has opened the door of emerging market economies and provided profitable opportunities to these least-developed countries.

BRICS greater role 

According to the Johannesburg declaration, the five-nation group will begin to play a greater role in joint initiatives ranging from economic connectivity and sharing expertise in industrial development to technological research, cooperation on pharmaceutical research and cultural exchange. In short, all five countries have vowed to support each other in tackling everything from terrorism to drought.

Xi Jinping: Building a community with a shared future for mankind

On July 26, President Xi Jinping delivered a keynote speech titled "Turn Our Vision into a Reality" at the plenary session of the Johannesburg summit, which trumpeted a new clarion call for other counterparts and developing countries to advance the right path of globalization, rejecting protectionism. He urged BRICS countries to deepen their strategic partnership and work to open up a second "Golden Decade," which is most fitting under the current circumstances. 

The language and slogans emanating from the meeting are in contrast to those the world often hears from President Trump. While the U.S. president is talking about "America First," Xi's collaborative humane approach is "Mankind First" which is gaining ever-growing respect from the international community. 

New industrial revolution 

Consistent with the theme of this year's meeting, Xi Jinping opened his speech highlighting the need of the new industrial revolution and put forward initiatives on the future development of the BRICS cooperation. Xi said, "The BRICS Partnership on New Industrial Revolution (PartNIR) is not only for BRICS countries but also for other emerging economies and developing countries." It can be firmly said that the BRICS partnership in the age of the fourth Industrial Revolution is bringing BRICS members closer in the arena of industrialization. 

No doubt, China's experience in artificial intelligence, automation and high-speed rail network makes it a perfect partner for India if the latter wants to develop its manufacturing sector.

Defense of multilateralism

As a responsible and receptive leader in world affairs, Xi emphasized that BRICS countries must remain committed to promoting free trade and investment through opening up. During his speech he never uttered the names of Trump or even the United States but cast China as a standard-bearer of free trade amid the increasing backlash against globalization. He called for a concerted effort by global institutions such as the United Nations and the WTO to fight unilateralism and protectionism. Undoubtedly, in the wake of tariff threats by Trump, Xi's speech sent a clear signal to preserve multilateralism and reject protectionism.

Expanding people-to-people exchanges

Besides economic issues, President Xi emphasized that the BRICS should aim for greater people-to-people connectivity and more popular support for BRICS cooperation through extensive exchanges in cultural, educational, health, sports, tourism and other areas. 

Undoubtedly, President Xi's Johannesburg speech has charted the course for BRICS's role in global governance. At the same time, his speech was a significant signal to the international community that today's fast-rising China has earned the right to play a leading role in shaping the new political and economic world order, promoting peace and prosperity, harmony and happiness for all. 

Rabi Sankar Bosu, Secretary of New Horizon Radio Listeners' Club, West Bengal, India

Opinion articles reflect the views of their authors only, not necessarily those of China.org.cn.

Follow China.org.cn on Twitter and Facebook to join the conversation.
ChinaNews App Download
Print E-mail Bookmark and Share

Go to Forum >>0 Comment(s)

No comments.

Add your comments...

  • User Name Required
  • Your Comment
  • Enter the words you see:   
    Racist, abusive and off-topic comments may be removed by the moderator.
Send your storiesGet more from China.org.cnMobileRSSNewsletter