BRICS solidarity: China lauds India, assures all help to combat corona

By Shweta Aggarwal and Harshvardhan 

In a sign of BRICS solidarity, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi has assured India of the BRICS’ support for combating the pandemic and lauded New Delhi for hosting an array of activities in the run-up to the summit of the five-nation grouping later this year.

In his welcome remarks, India’s External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar, who chaired the virtual meeting of the BRICS foreign ministers, on June 1 outlined India’s priorities as the chair of the BRICS this year. “Over the years, BRICS has evolved its own unique model of engagement that is based on consensus,” he said.

“Our collective endeavour is also to ensure that global decision-making reflects contemporary realities. To this end, we have identified four key deliverables for our Chairship – Reform of the Multilateral System, Counter Terrorism Cooperation, Using Digital and Technological Solutions to achieve SDGs, and Enhancing People to People Cooperation.”

In his opening remarks, China’s Foreign Minister and State Councilor Wang Yi lavished praise on India that attracted much attention from the media and the strategic community. “More than a hundred events have been designed to advance cooperation on the three pillars, strengthen the BRICS mechanism and uphold the momentum of BRICS cooperation, said Mr Wang. “China commends India for its efforts and we are ready to work with BRICS countries to support India as the chair and ensure tangible outcomes in this year’s BRICS cooperation, he said.

The expression of solidarity by China amid a continuing border stalemate in eastern Ladakh indicated Beijing’s desire to seek better relations with India despite a host of contentious issues.

“At this trying time, China stands in solidarity with India and all BRICS countries. As long as it is needed by India, I believe that all BRICS partners including China will provide further support and assistance at any time and we are fully confident that India will certainly overcome the pandemic,” he said.

Amid a growing chorus of sceptical voices questioning the relevance of the BRICS, Mr Wang underscored his confidence that with “all of us joining forces, BRICS will surely display its unique value and play a due role.”

“BRICS cooperation now faces the profound and complex ramifications of the pandemic and changes unseen in a century. This is a challenge to the BRICS countries but opportunities could also emerge from a crisis,” he said.

The Ministers “expressed grave concern over the continuing public health, societal and economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic globally. They expressed condolences for lives lost and pledged solidarity with the affected families,” a statement issued after the meeting said.

In Beijing, when asked about China’s expectations from the BRICS foreign ministers’ meeting, Wang Wenbin, spokesperson of China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said: “Together, we will send out a strong signal that BRICS countries, with solidarity and cooperation, support true multilateralism, promote post-epidemic economic recovery and tackle global challenges.”

Enhancing pandemic-related cooperation figured prominently in discussions between the BRICS foreign ministers, including India’s S. Jaishankar Brazil’s Carlos Alberto Franco França, Russia’s Sergey Lavrov, China’s Wang Yi, and South Africa’s Grace Naledi Mandisa Pandor. India will host the BRICS later this year. India’s chairship in 2021 has coincided with the 15th anniversary of BRICS, a milestone in the evolution of the five-nation grouping   which accounts for 41% of the global population, 24% of the global GDP and 16% of global trade.

The Ministers “expressed grave concern over the continuing public health, societal and economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic globally. They expressed condolences for lives lost and pledged solidarity with the affected families,” a statement issued after the meeting said.

In a boost for global equity in access to vaccines, the BRICS ministers backed the India-South Africa proposal for in WTO on a Covid-19 vaccine Intellectual Property Rights waiver.

“The Ministers reaffirmed the need to use all relevant measures during the pandemic, including supporting ongoing consideration in WTO on a Covid-19 vaccine Intellectual Property Rights waiver and the use of flexibilities of the TRIPS agreement and the Doha Declaration on TRIPS Agreement and Public Health,” said the joint statement.

 

Author Profile

India Writes Network
India Writes Network
India Writes Network (www.indiawrites.org) is an emerging think tank and a media-publishing company focused on international affairs & the India Story. A venture of TGII Media Private Limited, a leading media, publishing and consultancy company, IWN has carved a niche for balanced and exhaustive reporting and analysis of international affairs. Eminent personalities, politicians, diplomats, authors, strategy gurus and news-makers have contributed to India Writes Network, as also “India and the World,” a magazine focused on global affairs. The Global Insights India (TGII) is the research arm of India Writes Network. To subscribe to India and the World, write to editor@indiawrites.org