Officials from BRICS countries call for deeper financial cooperation
Published: Jun 07, 2022 01:03 AM
Photo: VCG

The finance ministers and central bank governors from the BRICS countries, Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa , agreed on expanding financial cooperation such as supporting the amendment of the Contingent Reserve Arrangement (CRA) treaty and encouraging cooperation on the New Development Bank, by signing a joint statement during a virtual meeting on Monday as the countries look to strengthen cooperation in the face of external pressures like COVID-19 outbreaks.

The delegates signed the statement during the second meeting of BRICS Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors held virtually on Monday and co-chaired by Chinese Minister of Finance, Liu Kun, and China's central bank governor, Yi Gang.

The officials called upon the international community to foster partnerships and underlined that it is imperative to strengthen macroeconomic policy coordination to drive the world economy out of the current crisis, while also urging for financial cooperation among BRICS countries in a number of ways.

In particular, the officials stressed their support for amendments to the Contingent Reserve Arrangement (CRA) and welcomed the progress achieved in revising other relevant documents.

"We look forward to the finalization of the amendments which would enhance the flexibility and responsiveness of the CRA mechanism [and] to the successful completion of the fifth CRA test run later in 2022," the statement read.

Established in 2015, the CRA is a framework for the provision of support through liquidity and precautionary instruments in response to actual or potential short-term balance of payments pressures among the BRICS countries.

That means that member countries that are experiencing financial difficulties should get liquidity support from other members to help relieve their capital stress. The initial total resources allocated to the CRA were set at $100 billion.

According to the joint statement, the BRICS countries also support work to improve the framework for coordination between the CRA and the IMF.

Besides the CRA, officials from the BRICS countries also called upon other forms of finance cooperation, such as strengthening infrastructure investment and cooperation in Public Private Partnerships (PPPs), and stressed their welcome of further membership expansion in the New Development Bank.

In addition to financial cooperation, the officials also stressed their support for an "open, transparent, inclusive, non-discriminatory and rules-based multilateral trading system" with the WTO at its core, a gesture of the determination of BRICS countries in standing up to US-sponsored protectionism.