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BRICS Legal Texts and Policy Documents


BRICS Legal Texts and Policy Documents

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BRICS Legal Texts and Policy Documents



The term ‘BRIC’ was first coined by Goldman Sachs chief economist Jim O’Neill in 2001 in a Global Economic Paper entitled, Building Better Global Economic BRICs. He believed that by 2050, the four fast-growing BRIC economies (Brazil, Russia, India and China) would come to dominate the global economy.

In 2006, the four BRIC countries (Brazil, Russia, India and China) initiated regular informal diplomatic coordination, with annual meetings of Foreign Ministers at the margins of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA). These interactions led to the decision that the dialogue was to be carried out at the level of Heads of State and Government in annual Summits, the first of which was held in Yekaterinburg in 2009. Since then, the depth and scope of the dialogue among the Members of BRICs – which became BRICS in 2011 with the inclusion of South Africa – has been further enhanced.

In August 2023, at the 15th Summit in Johannesburg, South Africa, it was decided that six (6) new members would be admitted to the BRICS group of developing countries: Saudi Arabia, Iran, Ethiopia, Egypt, Argentina and the United Arab Emirates. The new candidates will formally become members on 1 January 2024.

BRICS Joint Statistical Publication 2023

BRICS Joint Statistical Publication 2022

BRICS: 15-Year Review of South Africa’s trade and investment relationship with BRIC, July 2018


The BRICs Leaders met for the first time at the margins of the G-8 Summit (Hokkaido, 9 July 2008), where they requested their Foreign Ministers to organise the First BRICs Summit. Since 2009, the Heads of State (Head of Government in the case of India) have met at 15 Annual Summits:

The BRICS agenda

The two main pillars of BRICS dialogue are (i) coordination in multilateral fora, with a focus on economic and political governance; and (ii) cooperation between members. BRICS Foreign Ministers have held regular meetings alongside the United Nations General Assembly, while BRICS Finance Ministers meet at the margins of the G-20 meetings and of the biannual IMF and World Bank meetings, as well as at the margins of BRICS Summits, together with the Governors of Central Banks. Beyond these meetings and the Summits, the BRICS agenda has evolved to encompasses dialogue and cooperation across a number of areas including finance, agriculture, combating transnational crime, science and technology, health, education, corporate and academic dialogue, security, competition and trade among others.

Realising the BRICS Long Term Goals Road Maps and Pathways – A proposal by the BRICS Think Tanks Council, November 2017

The Strategy for BRICS Economic Partnership

The Strategy for BRICS Economic Partnership 2025 (hereinafter referred to as the ‘BRICS Strategy’) defines a development path of BRICS and sets the framework for cooperation of its members in accordance with current economic trends and conditions. By adopting the BRICS Strategy the countries demonstrate their determination to jointly address new global challenges, including macroeconomic shocks and financial volatility, and draw up a positive, balanced and clear economic agenda, including for intra-BRICS cooperation. The BRICS countries express their aspiration to stimulate strong economic growth, confront macroeconomic shocks and financial volatility, support the multilateral trading system based on the rules and principles of the World Trade Organisation (WTO), and resist emerging global uncertainty caused by a number of factors, including rise of unilateral and protectionist measures that run counter to the spirit and rules of the WTO.

The BRICS Strategy is adopted by BRICS Leaders during the presidency of the Russian Federation in BRICS in 2020. The BRICS Strategy will be revised when appropriate but no less than once in five years.

The priority areas of partnership include the following:

  1. Trade, investment, and finance

  2. Digital economy

  3. Sustainable development

Strategy for BRICS Economic Partnership 2025

pdf BRICS Implementation Roadmap on Trade and Investment related aspects of the “Strategy for BRICS Economic Partnership 2025”, 2021 (222 KB)

pdf Strategy for BRICS Economic Partnership, 2020 (337 KB)

In 2015, at the 7th BRICS Summit in Ufa, Russia, the BRICS countries identified fields of cooperation aimed at complementing and strengthening existing bilateral and multilateral relations between Member States. The Strategy for BRICS Economic Partnership would contribute to increasing the economic growth and competitiveness of the BRICS economies in the global arena.

The Strategy for BRICS Economic Partnership - Ufa, 2015

First Progress Report on the Implementation of The Strategy for BRICS Economic Partnership - August 2017

Cooperation on trade and economic affairs

The Trade Ministers of the BRICS traditionally meet on the eve of the Summits of Heads and States of Governments. They also meet at the margins of WTO Ministerial meetings. To date, the BRICS Trade Ministers have officially met 11 times.

A Contact Group on Economic and Trade Issues (CGETI), which reports to the Ministers of Trade, was established in 2011. The BRICS CGETI is entrusted with the task of proposing an institutional framework and concrete measures to expand economic cooperation both among BRICS countries and between BRICS countries and all developing countries. The first meeting of CGETI took place on 2 December 2011, in Beijing, China, to further its work. A wide-ranging Action Agenda on Economic and Trade Cooperation was adopted in Xiamen, China on 4 September 2017. Several further documents have been adopted since then.

pdf BRICS Initiative on Enhancing Cooperation on Supply Chains, 2022 (95 KB)

pdf Statement for BRICS Cooperation on the Multilateral Trading System, 2021 (90 KB)

pdf Framework for ensuring consumer protection in e-commerce, 2021 (164 KB)

pdf BRICS Framework for Cooperation in Trade in Professional Services, 2021 (132 KB)

pdf Guidelines for Promoting Effective Participation of MSMEs in International Trade, 2020 (361 KB)

pdf BRICS Understanding on Investment Facilitation, 2020 (360 KB)

pdf Declaration of the Heads of the BRICS Competition Authorities Extending MOU, 2020 (78 KB)

BRICS Action Agenda on Economic and Trade Cooperation, 2017

Framework on Strengthening the Economic and Technical Cooperation for BRICS Countries, 2017

Terms of Reference of the BRICS Model E-Port Network, July 2017

BRICS E-commerce Cooperation Initiative, July 2017

BRICS IPR Cooperation Guidelines, July 2017

Outlines for BRICS Investment Facilitation, July 2017

BRICS Trade in Services Cooperation Roadmap, July 2017

pdf Action Plan for deepening Industrial Cooperation among BRICS Countries, July 2017 (2.76 MB)

Communiqué of BRICS Heads of Tax Authorities Meeting, July 2017

pdf Regulations on Customs Cooperation Committee of the BRICS, 2016 (108 KB)

MoU on Cooperation in the Field of Competition Law and Policy, 2016

BRICS ICT Development Agenda and Action Plan, November 2016

Declaration of the IVth Trade Union Forum of BRICS countries, 2015

BRICS Trade and Investment Facilitation Plan, 2014

BRICS Perspective on International Investment Agreements, 2014

BRICS Trade and Investment Cooperation Framework, 2013

BRICS Industry Ministries

Established in 2015, the BRICS Industry Ministers Meeting is a mechanism for regular exchanges among industrial authorities of the BRICS countries. The Meeting is generally held every 1-2 years. As of 2022, six Industry Ministers Meetings have been held, focusing on the major areas of industrial cooperation with declarations reviewed and passed.

pdf Joint Declaration of 6th BRICS Industry Ministers Meeting, 2022 (201 KB)

pdf Joint Declaration of 5th BRICS Industry Ministers Meeting, 2021 (127 KB)

pdf Joint Declaration of the BRICS Ministers of Industry Virtual Meeting, 2021 (402 KB)

pdf Joint Declaration of the BRICS Ministers of Industry regarding strengthening cooperation in the area of the New Industrial Revolution, 2020 (226 KB)

pdf Declaration of the 4th BRICS Industry Ministers Meeting, 2018 (120 KB)

Action Plan for deepening Industrial Cooperation among BRICS Countries, July 2017

pdf Declaration of the BRICS Industry Ministers: Industrial Cooperation of the BRICS Countries – New Opportunities For Growth Moscow, 2015 (418 KB)

The New Development Bank and Contingent Reserves Arrangement

At its 6th Summit, the BRICS established the New Development Bank, aimed at financing infrastructure and sustainable development projects in the BRICS and other developing countries. The BRICS also concluded an agreement creating the Contingent Reserves Arrangement (CRA), a fund with an initial sum of US$ 100 billion, which the BRICS countries will be able to use to forestall short-term liquidity pressures. One of the objectives of the CRA is to contribute to international financial stability, by providing an additional line of defence to the BRICS.

Related documents

pdf BRICS Joint Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors Statement, 2023 (166 KB)

pdf Memorandum of Understanding on BRICS DFIs Principles for Responsible Financing, 2023 (140 KB)

pdf BRICS Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors’ Joint Statement, 2022 (143 KB)

pdf BRICS Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors Statement: Global Economic Outlook and Responding to COVID-19 Crisis, 2021 (368 KB)

pdf 1st Meeting of BRICS Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors, 2021 (345 KB)

pdf MoU between the BRICS Revenue Authorities, 2017 (108 KB)

Science, Technology and Innovation

The BRICS have agreed to further strengthen cooperation in the fields of science, technology and innovation for accelerated and sustainable socio-economic development amongst the five countries. The First BRICS Science, Technology and Innovation Ministerial Meeting was held on 10 February 2014 in Cape Town, South Africa.

Cooperation in related fields

While the “BRICS” concept was first created by Jim O’Neill of Goldman Sachs to refer to the investment opportunities of the rising emerging economies, the leaders’ meetings transcend the financial context to embrace a wide range of summit-level issues relating to global governance, such as development, peace and security, energy and climate change, and social issues.

pdf BRICS Strategy on Food Security Cooperation, 2022 (120 KB)

pdf Joint Declaration of the 12th Meeting of BRICS Ministers of Agriculture, 2022 (154 KB)

pdf Action Plan for Agricultural Cooperation of BRICS Countries, 2021-2024 (306 KB)

pdf 11th Meeting of BRICS Ministers of Agriculture: Joint Declaration, 2021 (95 KB)

pdf Joint Declaration of the X Meeting of BRICS Ministers of Agriculture and Agrarian Development: Online, 2020 (177 KB)

pdf Declaration on the Establishment of the BRICS Women’s Business Alliance, 2020 (205 KB)

pdf 9th Meeting of BRICS Ministers of Agriculture: Bonito Declaration, 2019 (2.78 MB)

BRICS Labour and Employment Ministers’ Declaration - New Delhi, 2016

Meeting of BRICS Agriculture Ministers: Joint Declaration - New Delhi, 2016

Second Meeting of BRICS Environment Ministers: Goa Statement, 2016

Meeting of BRICS Ministers for Disaster Management: Udaipur Declaration, 2016

BRICS Women Parliamentarians’ Forum: Jaipur Declaration, 2016

BRICS Labour and Employment Ministers’ meeting: Joint Communiqué, 2016

Heads of BRICS Migration Authorities: Joint Declaration, 2015

pdf Joint Statement of the BRICS Business Forum, 2013 (337 KB)


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