China moots BRICS Plus; rules out military alliance

Several rounds of dialogues were held with the other developing countries outside the BRICS during the previous summits of the bloc, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang told reporters when asked about Beijing's proposal for BRICS Plus at the Foreign Ministers meeting.

By: PTI | Beijing | Published: June 20, 2017 7:56 pm
China, BRICS Plus, military alliance, BRICS, BRICS summit, foreign ministers meeting Brazil’s Foreign Minister Aloysio Nunes, left, Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, second left, China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi, center, South Africa’s Foreign Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, second right, and Indian Minister of External Affairs Vijay Kumar Singh, right, attend a press conference during the BRICS Foreign Ministers meeting in Beijing Monday, June 19, 2017. The meeting is being held in advance of the 9th annual BRICS Summit in Xiamen in September 2017. (Source: Wang Zhao/Pool Photo via AP)

China today said it proposed BRICS Plus concept at the just concluded Foreign Ministers meeting to enhance cooperation with various developing nations but ruled out the chances of the bloc of emerging countries forming a clique or a military alliance.

Several rounds of dialogues were held with the other developing countries outside the BRICS during the previous summits of the bloc, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang told reporters when asked about Beijing’s proposal for BRICS Plus at the Foreign Ministers meeting which was also attended by Minister of State for External Affairs V K Singh.

“This is way for us to enhance our connection with other developing countries to further coordinate our positions,” Geng said.

“So the BRICS Plus concept proposed by Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi means that in future development, China will enhance our cooperation with other developing countries, enhance our interaction with them, so that BRICS cooperation can better reflect the collective position on aspiration of developing countries,” he said.

China, which is due to host this year’s BRICS summit in Xiamen city in September, reportedly plans to invite a number of countries.

A Chinese official cited how India invited leaders of the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) during last year’s Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa (BRICS) summit in Goa.

Likewise China too wants to invite a number of developing countries for the Xiamen meet as it is the discretion of the host country to invite countries for interaction on the sidelines.

Chinese officials said Beijing, however, is unlikely to invite Pakistan keeping up with the sensitivities of India, a leading member of the BRICS group.

Geng said BRICS counters are all major countries with influence and they are very representative in the family of emerging markets. “So cooperation among the countries will better reflect the call and voice of the developing countries. Since the inception of BRICS, it members never seized cooperation and interaction with other developing countries,” he said.

Geng, however, said while the bloc of emerging economies plans to deepen political and security cooperation from economic collaboration, it will not become a military alliance.

“I want to emphasise that BRICS cooperation has always followed the principle of openness, inclusive and win-win cooperation,” Geng said.

“BRICS cooperation does not intend to form a clique or political and military alliances. They do not intend to target, offset, challenge or replace someone,” he said. He said the BRICS nations are willing to work with other countries to form a community of shared future for mankind.

“The Chinese side is willing to work with other BRICS countries to promote the development of BRICS cooperation and make positive contribution to world peace and prosperity and jointly tackle global challenges,” he said.

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