PM Modi to attend BRICS summit: All you need to know about the 5-nation bloc

Updated on Nov 17, 2020 10:28 AM IST

BRICS is an acronym which stands for its five member countries: Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa. This year’s summit, the group’s 12th, will take place virtually due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.

BRICS Russia 2020 logo ( 2020)
BRICS Russia 2020 logo ( 2020)
Hindustan Times, New Delhi | | Edited by Karan Manral

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will on Tuesday attend the 12th BRICS summit, which will take place virtually due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The summit will bring together PM Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping for the second time in seven days, amid the ongoing Indo-China standoff in Ladakh, after last week’s Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) summit.

Also Read | BRICS Summit: Narendra Modi, Xi Jinping to share platform again

The 12th BRICS summit is being held on the theme of “Global stability, shared security and innovative growth.”

Here’s all you need to know about the 5-member bloc ‘BRICS’

1.The acronym ’BRICS’ stands for the five member states of the bloc: Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa. Initially, the group was only called ‘BRIC’ as South Africa was not among its original members and only joined in December 2010 at China’s invitation. The name of the group was hence modified to ‘BRICS.’

2. Goldman Sachs’ Jim O’Neill is credited with coining the term ‘BRIC’ in his 2001 publication titled ‘Building Better Global Economic BRICs.’ Neill coined this term to indicate the emerging powers he believed would be, along with the United States, the world’s five largest economies in the 21st century.

3. In 2006, the foreign ministers of the original four member states met in New York City on the sidelines of the General Debate of the United Nations Assembly. Subsequently, in 2009, Russia’s Yekaterinburg hosted a full-scale diplomatic meeting of the group.

4. The Russian city also hosted the first formal BRIC summit on 16 June 2009. Lula da Silva (then-Brazilian President), Dmitry Medvedev (then-Russian President), Manmohan Singh (then-Indian Prime Minister) and Hu Jintao (then-Chinese President) were the participants of the first BRIC summit.

5. A total of 10 BRICS summits have taken place since then. These were held in Brazil (2010), China (2011), India (2012), South Africa (2013), Brazil (2014), Russia (2015), India (2016), China (2017), South Africa (2018) and Brazil (2019).

6. South Africa’s first summit as a full member was in 2011 in China’s Sanya. The current summit is the first BRICS summit that will take place virtually though Russia retains its status of the host nation. India, meanwhile, is scheduled to host its third BRICS summit, the group’s 13th, in 2021.

7. Of the five member states, four are among the world’s 10 most populous countries: China (1), India (2), Brazil (6) and Russia (9). South Africa, meanwhile, is the 24th most populous nation in the world.

8. In terms of area, once again, four are among top 10: Russia (1), China (3), Brazil (5) and India (7). Here, too, South Africa comes at 24.

9. BRICS has a total of five official languages: Portuguese (Brazil), Russian (Russia), Hindi (India), Mandarin (China) and English (South Africa). The group is headquartered at Shanghai, China.

10. The group also comprises two financial institutions: the New Development Bank (NDB; also called BRICS Development Bank) and the Contingent Reserve Arrangement (CRA). Both were created at the 6th summit in 2014, held in Brazil’s Fortaleza, and became active in 2015.

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