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    China urges deeper BRICS cooperation

    Cheng Yu/Hu Meidong
    Updated: Sep 08,2021 07:03    China Daily

    China's calls for greater cooperation with BRICS partners, Brazil, Russia, India and South Africa, will help stabilize the global supply chain and drive technological innovations, government officials and industry experts said at a conference on Sept 7.

    An innovation base for members of the bloc was also unveiled at the conference in Xiamen, Fujian province, with contracts for 28 projects signed, with a total investment of around 13.4 billion yuan (about $2.1 billion).

    Jin Xin, secretary-general of the China Council for BRICS Think Tank Cooperation, said at the 2021 BRICS Forum on Partnership on New Industrial Revolution that greater cooperation among member states will aid global development.

    "More efforts are needed from BRICS countries to boost their cooperation on technological innovation, which is the fundamental driving force of a number of industries," he said.

    "With technological improvements, BRICS nations will be able to make a big leap in the reconstruction of the global supply chain and the industry chain."

    BRICS members should also develop their roles as regional leaders, aid neighboring nations and "boost cooperation with regions like Europe, to inject BRICS momentum into the world's economic development", Jin said.

    Minister of Industry and Information Technology Xiao Yaqing called for strengthening cooperation between China and other BRICS members in smart manufacturing, the industrial internet and green development.

    "China will push forward a group of demonstration projects on BRICS cooperation and encourage enterprises, scientific research institutions and universities from all countries to jointly build open innovation platforms to promote the application of new technologies," Xiao said at the conference.

    According to a report on the competitiveness of BRICS nations released by the China Science and Technology Exchange Center on Sept 7, the export volume of high-tech products from BRICS countries totals $6 trillion and accounts for over 25 percent of such products globally.

    BRICS countries' annual research and development investment for scientific and technological innovations accounted for over 16.7 percent of the global total, the report said. The comprehensive innovation index of BRICS countries will grow 1.5 percent annually on average in the coming years, it said. However, the average annual rate is 2.8 percent in G20 economies.

    The innovation base was approved during the 12th BRICS summit in November and will provide a foothold for members to make use of technological innovation and digital transformation brought by the new industrial revolution.

    According to the Ministry of Commerce, BRICS countries account for about 42 percent of the world's population, 24 percent of global GDP, 18 percent of global trade and 25 percent of the world's foreign investment on an annual basis.

    Russian Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Alexei Gruzdev said via video link on Sept 7 that the five BRICS countries have set an example on international cooperation in combating the COVID-19 pandemic, through the sharing of medical equipment, vaccines and knowledge.