Chinese President Xi Jinping called on the BRICS countries to fight COVID-19 in solidarity and advance BRICS cooperation through concerted efforts.
Xi made the remarks while addressing the 12th BRICS summit in Beijing via video link on Nov. 17, adding that the BRICS countries need to uphold multilateralism, enhance solidarity and coordination, pursue openness and innovation, prioritize people’s livelihood and pursue green and low-carbon development.
“Right now, the world is caught between a pandemic of the century and momentous changes never seen in the last one hundred years. The international landscape keeps evolving in profound ways. At such a critical moment, we are meeting to discuss our joint response to COVID-19 and draw a blueprint for the future of BRICS. The meeting has thus taken on a special significance,” he said.
The international community believes that Xi’s important and forward-looking speech based on the current achievements has injected great confidence and strong impetus into the world affected by the pandemic.
The BRICS cooperation shines bright with distinctive features, whether judging from the historical course of global development and evolving international landscape, or from the historical process of the respective and collective development of the BRICS countries.
The development and growth of the BRICS countries reflect the collective rise of emerging markets and developing countries, lead to faster, further and more extensive adjustments in the international landscape, and are profoundly reshaping the international economic and political landscape.
At present, the COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the profound changes in the world landscape unseen in a century, and humanity now stands at a new crossroad. The world economy is in deep recession. Unilateralism, protectionism and acts of bullying are becoming rampant, and the deficit in governance, trust, development and peace is widening instead of narrowing.
Under the theme of “BRICS Partnership for Global Stability, Shared Security and Innovative Growth,” the 12th BRICS summit demonstrates solidarity and responsibility and can inject much-needed stability and certainty into the world.
“We need to uphold multilateralism, and safeguard peace and stability in our world,” Xi said, adding that the BRICS countries also need to enhance solidarity and coordination and come together to meet the COVID-19 challenge, to pursue openness and innovation and promote global economic recovery, to prioritize people’s livelihood and promote sustainable global development, and to pursue green and low-carbon development and strive for harmony between man and nature.
By observing the prevailing trend in a strategic context and making strategic decisions accordingly, Xi stressed in his speech that the BRICS countries must keep people’s welfare close to heart, pursue the vision of a community with a shared future for mankind, and make due contributions to making the world a better place for everyone through practical actions.
The history of human society development is a history of struggles against all challenges and difficulties and victories over them.
While the most serious pandemic in a century is threatening global public health security and dragging down world economic growth, some countries go full steam with its unilateralism and bullying as well as withdrawing from international treaties and organizations. Their acts of politicization and stigmatization of the virus, as well as practice of using the pandemic to pursue “de-globalization” and clamor for “economic decoupling” and “parallel systems” pose threats to global governance and disrupt overall global cooperation against the virus. These issues must be urgently addressed.
Facing the choice between multilateralism and unilateralism, and between justice and hegemony, the BRICS countries must stand up for equity and justice in the world, Xi said.
He called on the BRICS countries to hold high the banner of multilateralism, overcome division with unity, replace bias with reason and stamp out the “political virus”, so as to pool the maximum global synergy to beat the virus.
Xi also urged the BRICS countries to stand firm for building an open world economy, uphold the multilateral trading system with the World Trade Organization at its core and reject abuse of the “national security” concept for protectionist purposes.
China has always developed itself to helping others with the well-being of the world in mind. Jim O’Neill, chairman of the London-based think tank Chatham House, said President Xi’s proposals of standing up for equity and justice in the world and holding high the banner of multilateralism amid the current international situation is exceptionally important.
O’Neill also noted that such proposals are vital for the BRICS countries to continue maintaining the sound momentum of development and growth.
As an important BRICS member, China has fulfilled its responsibilities as a major country with concrete actions.
China will actively consider providing vaccines to countries where there is a need. To support the development of the BRICS Vaccine R&D Center, China has designated its own national center.
The country will open a BRICS Partnership on New Industrial Revolution innovation center to advance cooperation on policy coordination, personnel training and project development. China is also prepared to take on international responsibilities befitting its level of development, and will continue to make extraordinary efforts to address climate change.
Besides, China will be more vigorous in integrating with the global market and will take greater initiative in deepening international cooperation. In so doing, it will create more opportunities and space for global recovery and growth.
China’s concrete actions of working with BRICS partners to continue to write new chapters of cooperation and make the world a better place win wide acclaim from the international community.
Russian President Vladimir Putin said at the 12th BRICS summit that China has proved to the world that the coronavirus can be defeated and that China has set an example for other countries in this regard.
Christine Bierre, a researcher at the Schiller France Institute, believes that China, as an active participant of the BRICS cooperation mechanism, has made important contributions to the global fight against the pandemic.
BRICS is a task force that gets things done. As long as the BRICS countries continue to follow the BRICS spirit of openness, inclusiveness and win-win cooperation and enhance partnership and pragmatic cooperation across the board, they can surely contribute more to addressing global challenges and improving global governance, and embrace an even brighter future.