On Thursday, 19 May, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi chaired a meeting of BRICS foreign ministers via videoconference. South African Minister of International Relations and Cooperation Naledi Pandor, Brazilian Foreign Minister Carlos França, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Indian Foreign Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar took part in the event.
The event began with remarks made by Chinese President Xi Jinping at the opening session of the BRICS Foreign Ministers' Meeting. He said the BRICS countries need to strengthen mutual political trust and security cooperation. He called on the five BRICS countries to engage in dialogue and exchanges with more emerging markets and developing countries to increase mutual understanding and trust, tighten the bond of cooperation, and deepen the convergence of interests.
In an online meeting of the foreign ministers of the BRICS countries, the Chinese Foreign Minister suggested launching an expansion process of BRICS.
"The Chinese side proposes to launch the BRICS expansion process, review the rules and procedures of the process and gradually build consensus," Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said.
He said this would help demonstrate the openness and inclusiveness of BRICS, respond to the expectations of developing countries, increase the representativeness and influence of the association and help make a meaningful contribution to maintaining peace and development across the globe, as reported by Renmin Ribao ("People's Daily online"), a partner of TV BRICS in China.
The foreign ministers of Brazil, Russia, India and South Africa supported the initiative and agreed to hold further discussions on the matter.
Furthermore, the participants of the meeting appreciated China's role in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. They also expressed their desire to further strengthen cooperation between the five countries in the areas of trade, health and humanitarian cooperation.
The BRICS is an international organisation founded in 2006. Its current members are Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa. In addition to summits of the five leaders, meetings are held at the level of foreign ministers, finance ministers and other ministries and departments.
Photo: Renmin Ribao