On Wednesday night, outgoing chairman Dr Iqbal Survé launched a book which delves into the work of the council since its formation in 2013.
Speaking at the gala dinner, the entrepreneur, investor, philanthropist and physician, affectionately known as the Struggle Doctor for treating apartheid victims, said the special night was to celebrate the journey and the progress of the Brics Council.
“Sometimes you forget what Brics means. Let me contextualise. We are here to serve our people, country and continent. I grew up with a social justice welfare framework and trying to see how we could lead and participate in the global economy. And so we serve with pride and pleasure, and do so with no expectations,” he said.
Dr Survé said the book was a reflection and documentation of the council's successful activities over the past five years and would move readers.
He wished the next chairman well and thanked all who supported him.
ANC deputy secretary-general Jessie Duarte said the institute that started as merely an idea had made a huge difference in the country.
“We have an opportunity to shift and redirect South Africa’s resources to other parts of the world. Of course, people will say it is the Chinese way of being imperialist, but we need not be negative.”
Duarte also said the ANC believed it was important for business people in all the Brics countries to do business with no fear.
She wished Dr Survé and his team well in their future endeavours after they hand over the baton to the new group who will lead the council.
Addressing guests, Chinese ambassador Lin Songtian said it was a great honour for him to celebrate the council's fifth anniversary as well as the book launch. “China has developed to be the number one manufacturer, and its economic contribution is more than 30% to the world. China is ready to open the market to South Africa.”