Sergei Ryabkov: BRICS – Pillar of a multi-polar world
Summing up the results of Russia's BRICS Presidency on the Rossiya 24 TV Channel, Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov called BRICS one of the pillars of a multi-polar world.
"BRICS has changed beyond recognition in a decade since its first ministerial meeting. Now this is a pillar of a multi-polar world. BRICS does not just hold meetings and conferences, but is carrying out practical work," he said.
Mr Ryabkov, the Russia's Sherpa, noted that the efforts of the BRICS countries to switch from declarations to practical work were especially pronounced in the year of Russia's Presidency in BRICS.
Speaking about economic issues raised by Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa in 2015, he recalled that all BRICS countries recognise the need and expedience of conducting payment settlements in each country's national currency.
Russia hopes that the BRICS New Development Bank (NDB) will start allocating funds for joint projects in the near future.
"The financial and economic bloc has become considerably larger. Now we are drafting a road map for trade and economic cooperation, for which Russia has submitted over 30 proposals. I hope that the NDB will soon make decisions to allocate funds for the implementation of relevant projects, including in Russia ," Mr Ryabkov emphasised.
He said BRICS is elaborating a series of new partnership projects outlined at the Ufa Summit. "We have a whole host of formats for negotiating on security - space, counterterrorism efforts, transport security, protection of transport against piracy and the like," he said.
Replying to the question about the possibility of creating an energy union in BRICS, Mr Ryabkov said that "the BRICS countries are coming to realise the need for this," but its implementation will require time.
"As for the BRICS energy association, it would be appropriate to draw a parallel with payment settlement in national currencies - the need for it should be recognised with time," he said.