BRICS is the group composed by the five major emerging countries - Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa -, which together represent about 42% of the population, 23% of GDP, 30% of the territory and 18% of the global trade.

 

The acronym BRIC was coined by Goldman Sachs in 2001 to indicate the emerging powers that would be, alongside the United States, the five largest economies of the world in the 21st century. In 2006, BRIC countries started their dialogue, which since 2009 takes place at annual meetings of heads of state and government. In 2011, with South Africa joining the group, the BRICS reached its final composition, incorporating a country from the African continent.

 

Since the beginning of their dialogue, in 2006, these countries have sought to establish fairest international governance, one that would be more suitable to their national interests. This goal would be achieved, for example, through the reform of the International Monetary Fund quota system, which came to include, for the first time, Brazil, Russia, India, and China amongst the top ten largest shareholders.

 

Throughout its first decade, BRICS has developed sectorial cooperations in different areas, such as science and technology, trade promotion, energy, health, education, innovation and fight against transnational crime. Currently, sectorial cooperation, which covers more than 30 subject areas, brings important concrete benefits to the populations of the five countries. It is the case of the Tuberculosis Research Network, which aims to introduce quality medicines and diagnoses with affordable prices.

 

At the Fortaleza Summit (2014), in Brazil, important institutions were created: the New Development Bank (NDB) and the Contingent Reserve Arrangement (CRA). So far, the NDB has approved more than 8 billion-dollars in infrastructure and renewable energy financing projects in the BRICS countries. The CRA is operational and is an important financial stability mechanism for countries affected by crises in their balance of payments.

 

In addition to presidential meetings (summit and the informal meeting in the margins of the G20), BRICS organizes, through its rotating chairship, nearly 100 annual meetings, including about 15 ministerial meetings and dozens of gatherings with official seniors, technical events, as well as meetings on  culture, education and sport areas.

 

Throughout 2019, Brazil will hold the BRICS pro tempore presidency. The emphasis of the Brazilian presidency will be on promoting science, technology and innovation; digital economy; the increase of productive sector contact with NDB; and the strengthening cooperation in the fight against transnational crimes. Furthermore, dozens of academic, sporting, cultural and artistic events are scheduled for the year.