New Delhi, July 22 (Xinhua) -- BRICS countries need to stand together to fight the new wave of protectionism, and the shared agenda is bringing the two largest economies of BRICS -- China and India, closer together, said a professor at Delhi-based Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU).
Over the past decade, the BRICS has become strong and India expects the grouping to combat issues like protectionism, terrorism and the challenge of climate change, said Swaran Singh, professor at the Center for International Politics, Organization and Disarmament at JNU's School of International Studies.
BRICS member countries -- Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa -- should resolve to design innovation strategies to reduce costs and maximize benefits through their joint efforts in fighting these challenges, Singh said in a recent interview with Xinhua ahead of the tenth BRICS Summit to be held from July 25-27 in South Africa.
"India would like (the) BRICS summit to continue its quest for ensuring free, fair and transparent global trade practices that have come under threat following recent whimsical policies of (U.S.) President Donald Trump's skewed imaginations of 'America First'," added Singh.
He further stated that the need now is that BRICS stands united to withstand threats and bullying from the Trump administration.
"To some extent, Trump's whimsical policies have already begun to unite the rest of the world, including his close allies and emerging economies. BRICS can take the lead to explore coordination among several major economies," he suggested.
The professor noted that the BRICS platform should strive to fight illiteracy, diseases and poverty among other issues facing the five economies. "As BRICS enters its second golden decade it has no doubt emerged as the most powerful engine of global growth. Yet it also remains home for illiteracy, ill-health and poverty that remain cause for discrimination, exploitation and crime for virtually half of world population."
According to him, BRICS has both opportunity and responsibility to transform the lives of vast number of people. The grouping has made substantial progress in several of these areas. Their expanding intra-BRICS interdependence and coordination promise to further accelerate the pace of this transformation and development. From there, BRICS can also emerge as a major force for transformation in global structures and processes of decision-making and governance.
Recalling the BRICS Summit hosted in India two years ago, Singh said that New Delhi has always had a strong focus on promoting people-to-people contacts among the five economies.
"During India's presidency of BRICS during 2017, New Delhi had launched several firsts, including first BRICS trade fair, first BRICS film festival, first BRICS under-17 football cup etc. This was (the) reflection of India's strong focus on expanding and strengthening people-to-people contacts which remains the foundation for their other inter-state security and economic partnerships for promoting peace and stability around the world," said Singh.