Priorities And Goals Of Russia’s BRICS Chairmanship

On 1 January 2024, Russia took over the baton of presidency over the enlarged BRICS, which already includes 10 states. Egypt, Iran, UAE, Saudi Arabia and Ethiopia have been added to the previous line-up.

The motto of the Russian BRICS Chairmanship is “Strengthening Multilateralism for Equitable Global Development and Security”. It traces the directions that will be on the agenda:

  • politics and security,
  • economy and finance,
  • cultural and humanitarian contacts.

The main task of the Russian Chairmanship is to support and strengthen the role of BRICS as a credible centre of attraction for countries seeking an independent foreign policy course.

The BRICS countries’ principles are sovereign equality, aspiration to form a fair model of global markets, search for joint responses to the challenges of our time.

BRICS events in Russia in 2024

Russia has founded a special interdepartmental Organising Committee for the preparation and provision of the BRICS Chairmanship in 2024. This structure coordinates the participation of Russian federal and regional authorities, parliamentary, business and public circles in the group’s mechanisms.

The Organising Committee holds regular meetings of the Working Groups supervising foreign policy, financial and organisational topics. All ministries and departments, public organisations and other structures promptly report to the Organising Committee on the progress and results of their work. In December 2023, the Plan of Events under the auspices of the Russian Chairmanship was approved with 250 events. They will be held in more than ten cities in Russia.

The official calendar of BRICS events in 2024 is dense and packed, and the thematic scope is multifaceted and ambitious.

The Chairmanship has planned more than 200 different events in different parts of Russia, the culmination of which will be the summit in Kazan on 22-24 October. The list of meetings includes business and political science conferences, seminars for municipalities, the Parliamentary Forum, and the BRICS Sports Games. Russia’s focus is also on building up ties in science and innovation, healthcare, and deepening contacts between academic and scientific centres.

Russia’s policy priorities during the BRICS Chairmanship

One of the main political objectives of Russia’s BRICS Chairmanship is the consistent and harmonious integration of the new BRICS members into the multilateral format. Russia will continue to promote the principled political attitude, which is expressed in the mutual and consensual consideration of interests.

“BRICS, especially given the increase in the number of member countries, is turning into a major platform for promoting the ideas of a new equitable world order. In this context, Russia, as the chair of the association in 2024, faces the task of ensuring not only smooth but also rapid integration of the new countries of the group”

Mikhail Khachaturyan, Associate Professor of the Department of Strategic and Innovative Development at the Financial University under the Government of Russia

Also on the agenda of Russia’s presidency in 2024: promoting the institutional development of BRICS, deepening cooperation on international security issues at the regional and global levels, as well as developing the potential for cooperation in combating various types of illegal activities.

Economic objectives

The Russian Chairmanship’s economic agenda focuses on strengthening the partnership of the BRICS member states in trade, investment, innovation and technology, and social spheres. In order to ensure strong economic growth in all countries of the group, the multifaceted cooperation of business circles will have to be intensified and business contacts will have to be expanded, including through small and medium-sized entrepreneurs.

Work will continue on the Contingent Reserve Arrangement Pool, primarily for the transition to national currencies in international settlements.

“An important goal for the future is the creation of an independent settlement payment system through BRICS that would be based on the most modern technologies, such as digital currencies and blockchain. And most importantly – it would be comfortable for states, population and business, would not require serious costs and would be out of politics”

Viktoria Perskaya, Honoured Economist of Russia

Russia, as BRICS Chair, intends to intensify dialogue on industrial development aimed at increasing productivity and digitalisation. In addition, the agenda includes the development of interbank co-operation, interaction in agriculture and other spheres.

Humanitarian co-operation

The Russian Chairmanship focuses on deepening humanitarian contacts between BRICS countries and partners, including in the areas of culture, youth exchanges, sports and tourism. BRICS Culture and Film Festivals, Academic and Civic Forums, Youth Forum and Youth Camp, and Young Diplomats Forum are planned. The International Municipal Forum of the BRICS+ countries will be held, as well as the traditional Forum of Twin Cities and Municipalities.

The Russian initiative to launch the Integrated System for Early Warning of Mass Infectious Disease Risks will be promoted in healthcare. In addition, Russia favours closer coordination in the association’s Working Group on Nuclear Medicine, antimicrobial resistance, development of social medicine and support for people with disabilities.

The BRICS Games will be held in June 2024 and athletes from over 60 countries have been invited to attend. They have 29 sports in their programme. This is a format for multilateral co-operation between the member states of the association in various fields, in this case in the field of sport.

Landmark year for BRICS+

The number of those wishing to join BRICS is constantly growing. The relevance of this format of interaction with like-minded countries is also growing. “BRICS+/outreach” meetings are being held. In essence, it is when leaders of states interested in making a constructive contribution to the discussion of topical issues on the international and regional agenda are invited to the BRICS summits.

For example, this year’s summit in Kazan is planned to invite the heads of member states and heads of executive structures of the Eurasian Economic Union, the Commonwealth of Independent States and the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, and possibly a number of other countries and regional structures.

During 2024, the Russian side will work out the rules of selection and candidates for the countries that will join BRICS in the future. Both these criteria and the specific list of states will be agreed upon by all members of the association and approved at the October summit. The political and economic weight of an applicant country, its place not only in its region but also in the international arena will be taken into account. It is indispensable to support the principles of multipolarity in global governance, as well as the fundamental values of the BRICS, including the spirit of equality, mutual respect, openness, inclusiveness, and constructive co-operation.

African Times published this article in partnership with International Media Network TV BRICS



Related Articles

African Times