Prime Minister Manmohan Singh arrived at this picturesque capital of South Africa on Monday to attend the 5th India-Brazil-South Africa (IBSA) summit, which is expected to reflect the three countries’ common positions on a range of hot-button global issues.
The summit at Pretoria, being hosted by South Africa’s president Jacob Zuma at the Presidential Guest House on Tuesday, will also be attended by Brazil’s president Dilma Rousseff.
The summit will focus, among other issues, on coordination among IBSA countries in the United Nations Security Council, climate change, economic cooperation and sustainable development.
Also on the table will be a range of other matters related to deepening of cooperation under IBSA’s institutional framework.
Founded in 1993, IBSA is a unique trilateral mechanism that brings together India, Brazil and South Africa to underline the importance of South-South cooperation. All three IBSA members, large, multi-ethnic and multicultural democracies, are recognised as emerging economic powers from three continents and face identical challenges.
It is also an opportunity to deepen their ties in various areas, besides forging cooperation with less developed countries.
The IBSA dialogue forum has matured considerably over the years and there is greater cooperation across a wider canvas. Above all, the idea of three large developing democracies working together in a highly complex global environment has taken root.
“It is a happy coincidence that in 2011, India, Brazil and South Africa are members of the United Nations Security Council,” Manmohan Singh said in a statement before leaving for Pretoria. “We have shown significant cohesiveness and coordination in our approach to issues under discussion in the Security Council.”
At the summit, the Prime Minister will exchange views with his IBSA partners on the current global economic and financial situation especially in the context of the forthcoming G-20 summit in France. A joint declaration is likely to be issued in South Africa.
Manmohan Singh will also hold bilateral meetings with Zuma and Rousseff.
External affairs minister SM Krishna and his deputy, Anand Sharma, are part of the high-level delegation accompanying the Prime Minister.