23072018 (Durban) Chairpersons of BRICS Business Council L-R Paulo Cesar de Silva e Souza of Brazil,Sergey Katyrin of Russia, Dr Iqbal Survé of South Africa, Onkar Kanwar of India and Captain Xu Lirong of China, attending the plenary session during the 6th BRICS Business Council Annual Meeting 2018 held in ICC, Durban. Picture: Motshwari Mofokeng/ African News Agency/ANA
DURBAN - The BRICS Business Council’s annual report will be submitted to the BRICS heads of state on Thursday during the 10th BRICS Summit to be held in Johannesburg from tomorrow.

BRICS Business Council chairperson Dr Iqbal Survé announced this at the council’s plenary session, following the signing of the report reviewing the programme of work during the preceding period and the recommendations made by the chairpersons of the council’s chapters, at the sixth BRICS Business Council annual meeting held in Durban on Sunday and yesterday.

The meeting was attended by more than 400 representatives from the business communities of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, as well as representatives from strategic partners such as the New Development Bank (NDB).

Chinese chapter chairperson Captain Xu Lirong said the focus areas for the council would include the implementation of the Memorandum of Understanding with the NDB and substantive co-operation in the working groups, especially on regional aviation and the digital economy, and the alleviation of administrative barriers to trade and investment.

He also encouraged more companies to start dialogues and co-operation through the platform offered by the Business Council.

Implement

Yesterday, Dr Survé called on the business communities in the five countries to build a community of shared interests and further implement the Strategy for BRICS Economic Partnership.

The Business Council was also reviewing other proposed recommendations, which included establishing an energy information portal, an energy agency, the joint implementation of transport infrastructure development projects and youth entrepreneurship, Fourth Industrial Revolution skills development, an e-commerce platform, and food security and safety.

Dr Survé said the council would also carry forward trade and investment co-operation and facilitation, co-operation with the NDB and the prospects presented by the digital economy.

The strategic partnership between the BRICS Business Council and the NDB was reinforced through the working breakfast, addressed by the two vice-presidents of the NDB, Xian Zhu and Leslie Maasdorp, as well as the chairpersons of all the council’s chapters.

The council also reviewed the work and achievements during South Africa’s presidency in 2018 and listened to the reports presented by the nine working groups.

A proposal to consider the establishment of a Youth Working Group was also made to the council.

-BUSINESS REPORT