As China entered the Xi era with the consecration of President Xi Jinping among the pantheon of Chinese greats like Mao Zedong and Deng Xiaoping, there has been a flood of messages from world leaders congratulating Mr. Xi on his elevation as one of the most powerful leaders of his country. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi choose to send a message through his Weibo account (a Chinese social network à laTwitter)saying: “Congratulations to President Xi on getting re-elected as CPC General Secretary. Look forward to further promote India-China ties together.” India-China relations had come under a cloud following the 72-day long stand-off at Doklam, but the two leaders had put that behind them when they met at the BRICS summit in the Chinese city of Xiamen in September.Read More
The 8th BRICS Summit in Goa marked the 15th anniversary of an idea proposed in 2001. However, BRICS as a grouping has grown into something much wider and deeper in the intervening 15 years. South Africa was added to the group in 2011, enlarging it from four members to five. In terms of agenda and areas of interest also, BRICS has had a very successful evolution.
What does the future trajectory of BRICS look like? Will it continue to grow in strength and influence? Will some of the strategic competition between the members make it less effective? What will be the impact of the serious economic slowdown on three of the five members? Can BRICS make a lasting contribution in areas like Sustainable Development and Global Governance? These are some of the questions faced by the five countries. A medium and long-term vision is needed to take the group forward.
For India, apart from the gains emanating from intra-BRICS cooperation, there is a visible additionality to the country’s global clout. There are areas in global governance where India by itself cannot bring about changes. However, BRICS as a platform has the potential to do this. A multi-polar or polycentric world of the future is more likely to have these kinds of groupings as the centres of influence, rather than individual countries, and that is where the value of BRICS lies.