China’s Xi asks NDB, Business Council to drive BRICS infrastructure development

05 Sep 2017


Chinese President Xi Jinping has called for greater cooperation among BRICS countries through active intervention by the BRICS Business Council and the New Development Bank (NDB).

The BRICS declaration has welcomed the establishment of the NDB Africa Regional Center launched in South Africa, its first regional office. The NDB will now have a Project Preparation Fund and approval for the second batch of projects.

The declaration also emphasises on the significance of infrastructure connectivity to foster closer economic ties and partnerships among countries.

''We encourage the NDB to fully leverage its role and enhance cooperation with multilateral development institutions, including the World Bank and the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank as well as with the BRICS Business Council, to forge synergy in mobilising resources and promote infrastructure construction and sustainable development of BRICS countries,'' reads the declaration.

In his remarks during talks between the BRICS Business Council and BRICS leaders attending the ninth BRICS summit, Xi praised the achievements of the council and the NDB.

The Business Council comprising business organisations from all the five countries has done a lot in the fields of e-commerce, technical development, standard setting, and the experience sharing in the digital economy, he said.

Xi noted that the Shanghai-headquartered NDB has developed new projects with the opening of its African regional centre.

The NDB has developed new projects, with the recent opening of its African regional centre, work beginning on its headquarters, and progress in business operations and mechanisms, he said.

The results demonstrated the vitality and potential of BRICS cooperation, Xi was quoted as saying by state-run Xinhua news agency.

As the BRICS leaders have agreed to work for the next "golden decade" of cooperation, the Business Council and the NDB should make use of that opportunity, Xi said.

He said the two organisations should work to help BRICS countries to achieve mutual benefit and win-win result by translating the leaders' common ground into concrete action.

Also, they should help guide and inject new impetus into BRICS economic development by following the latest technological and industrial revolutions, and facilitate cooperation among BRICS countries and other emerging market and developing countries.

They should focus on social effects while pursuing economic interests, he said.

Leaders of other BRICS countries also spoke highly of the Business Council and the NDB and expressed confidence in the two organisations.

After the meeting, the leaders witnessed the signing of four documents on cooperation in economy and trade, innovation and customs and on the strategic cooperation between the Business Council and the NDB.

NDB President K V Kamath attended the meeting, which saw a participation of nearly 300 people, including Business Council members and business representatives.

The leaders also attended the opening ceremony of the BRICS Cultural Festival and Photo Exhibition and watched the trailer of "Where Has Time Gone", the first film co-produced by the five countries.

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