The BRICS countries on Thursday expressed strong condemnation of terrorism in all its forms and manifestations, including the cross-border movement of terrorists, and terrorism financing networks and safe havens.
In a declaration issued at the end of the 14th BRICS Summit held through the video link, the five member grouping also called for expeditious finalisation and adoption of the Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism within the UN framework. "We recognise the threat emanating from terrorism, extremism conducive to terrorism and radicalisation. We are committed to combating terrorism in all its forms and manifestations, including the cross-border movement of terrorists, and terrorism financing networks and safe havens," said the declaration.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi participated in the virtual BRICS summit, along with Chinese President Xi Jinping, Russian President Vladimir Putin and top leaders of Brazil and South Africa. "We reiterate that terrorism should not be associated with any religion, nationality, civilisation or ethnic group. We call for expeditious finalisation and adoption of the Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism within the UN framework and for launching multilateral negotiations on an international convention for the suppression of acts of chemical and biological terrorism, at the Conference of Disarmament," the declaration said.
The summit also welcomed the outcomes of the Seventh BRICS Counter-Terrorism Working Group Plenary Meeting and its five Subgroup Meetings. "We commend the Chair for hosting the Seminar on Targeted Financial Sanctions Related to Terrorism and Terrorist Financing, and look forward to organisation of the Seminar on Strengthening Counter-Terrorism Capacity Building in Developing Countries, and the BRICS Police Training Program. We also look forward to further deepening counter-terrorism cooperation," it said.
"We look forward to further deepening counter-terrorism cooperation and reaffirm the sole authority of the UN Security Council for imposing sanctions and call for further consolidation and strengthening of the working methods of UN Security Council Sanctions Committees to ensure their effectiveness, responsiveness and transparency, while avoiding politicization of any of their proceedings including listing proposals objectively on evidence-based criteria," it said. The summit also affirmed commitment to strengthening international cooperation against corruption.
"We welcome the BRICS Initiative on Denial of Safe Haven to Corruption. We will further strengthen anti-corruption capacity building through education and training programs and enhance anti-corruption exchanges and cooperation within multilateral frameworks. We welcome the first BRICS Anti-corruption Ministerial Meeting," it said. The summit also expressed concern over the serious drug situation in the world. "We appreciate BRICS Anti-Drug Working Group's active role in combating transnational drug trafficking and promoting global drug governance and will further strengthen drug control cooperation," it said.
It also called for policy coordination for economic recovery from the COViD pandemic. "We reaffirm our commitment to continuing to enhance macro-economic policy coordination, deepen economic practical cooperation, and work to realise strong, sustainable, balanced and inclusive post-COVID economic recovery," it said. "We emphasise the importance of continued implementation of the Strategy for BRICS Economic Partnership 2025 in all relevant ministerial tracks and working groups," it said.
"We recognise the dynamism of the digital economy in mitigating the impact of COVID-19 and enabling global economic recovery. We take note of China's hosting the 'Buy BRICS' online promotion event and endorse the BRICS Digital Economy Partnership Framework, BRICS Initiative on Trade and Investment for Sustainable Development and BRICS Initiative on Enhancing Cooperation on Supply Chains," it said. The declaration welcomed the establishment of the Digital Economy Working Group by upgrading the E-commerce Working Group and said the BRICS nations have agreed to promote consumer protection in e-commerce by advancing the implementation of BRICS Framework for Consumer Protection in E-commerce.
"We agree to strengthen exchanges and cooperation in trade in services and engagement of BRICS national focal points, as established in the BRICS Framework for Cooperation on Trade in Services, with the BRICS Business Council with the aim to promote implementation of BRICS Trade in Services Cooperation Roadmap and relevant documents including the BRICS Framework for cooperation in Trade in Professional Services," it said. The summit congratulated the BRICS New Development Bank (NDB) on its relocation to its permanent headquarters building in Shanghai as well as the opening of NDB's regional office in India.
"We welcome the decisions on admission of four new members to the NDB and look forward to further membership expansion in a gradual and balanced manner in terms of geographic representation and comprising of both developed and developing countries, to enhance the NDB's international influence as well as the representation and voice of EMDCs in global governance, it said. "We welcome the decision to establish the BRICS Think Tank Network for Finance. We expect it to work independently and provide intellectual support, as and when tasked, for knowledge sharing, exchange of experiences and practices and cooperation on finance issues amongst BRICS countries," it said.
"We acknowledge the importance of strengthening the Contingent Reserve Arrangement (CRA) mechanism, which contributes to strengthening the global financial safety net and complements existing international monetary and financial arrangements," it said. "We recognise the importance of BRICS Startup Events including BRICS Innovation Launchpad and BRICS Startup Forum Meeting, aimed to promote networking, interaction, mentorship among Startups in BRICS countries," it said."We commend our Customs authorities for the Agreement Between the Governments of BRICS Countries on Cooperation and Mutual Administrative Assistance in Customs Matters, and the progress made in areas of mutual administrative assistance, capacity building and law enforcement cooperation," it added.