New Delhi: Leaders from Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa met in New Delhi at the BRICS grouping today. These nations comprise nearly half the world's population and a growing share of global GDP.
Here are the ten key outcomes of the Fourth BRICS Summit today:
1) Declaration after the summit cautions the West against allowing the Iranian situation to escalate into conflict. It backs dialogue to resolve the Iranian nuclear impasse. The declaration said the crisis over Iran's nuclear programme should be resolved diplomatically and should not be allowed to escalate. It also recognised the right of Iran to pursue peaceful nuclear energy. "We agreed that lasting solution to the problems in Syria and Iran can only be found through dialogue," Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said.
2) The declaration also backs a Syria-led democratic transition. BRICS voices "deep concern" over Syria and calls for "an immediate end to all violence and violations of human rights" and backs a Syrian-led political process.
3) Leaders agree to explore the setting up of a BRICS-led South-South Development Bank in the mold of the World Bank. It will promote mutual investment and will help fund infrastructure and act as alternative lender to the World Bank and other finance bodies
4) The BRICS leaders also accused rich countries of destabilising the world economy five years into the global financial crisis. "It is critical for advanced economies to adopt responsible macroeconomic and financial policies, avoid creating excessive global liquidity and undertake structural reforms to lift growth that create jobs," they said in a joint declaration.
5) IMF quota reforms: Pitch for greater representation of developing countries and emerging economies in the IMF by speeding up quota reforms. Promised changes to voting rights at the IMF have yet to be ratified by the United States, adding to frustration over reform of the G7 and the U.N. Security Council, where India and Brazil have been angling for years for permanent seats
6) Countries back a "merit-based selection-process" for the heads of the IMF and the World Bank, posts reserved customarily for a European and an American respectively.
7) BRICS leaders pitch for reform of global governance institutions, including the UN, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank.
8) The five BRICS nations, which collectively account for nearly half the world's population and a fifth of its economic output, signed an agreement to extend credit facilities in their local currencies, a step aimed at reducing the role of the dollar in trade between them.
9) Adopted an all-encompassing action plan that includes, among other things, meetings of foreign ministers on sidelines of the UN and meetings of Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors on sidelines of G20 meetings/other multilateral meetings.
10) Other moves to bring their economies closer together include the launch on Friday of benchmark equity index derivatives allowing investors in one BRICS country to bet on the performance of stock markets in the other four members without currency risk. The indexes will be cross-listed on their stock exchanges from Friday.