BRICS summit: India banking on trade ties with Beijing, Kremlin

As world leaders descent in India from Brazil, Russia, China and South Africa for the BRICS summit, India is banking on trade ties to isolate Pakistan in the region.(IndiaToday)

In a twin strategy, India will be flexing its trade muscle with China and Russia. From blocking India’s NSG bid, to water wars at Brahmaputra river and a veto against India’s bid to designate Masood Azhar as a global terrorist in UN, Beijing has been in a constant face-off with India.

But India is banking on the strength of its markets where Chinese imports stands at $61.7 billion dollars to ensure Beijing falls in line. For China too which is facing a slowdown it is imperative to find a trade partner in India.

“At this moment, Indian economy is growing strongest among BRICS. I see the geopolitical issues are constantly changing and unpredictable. We need to prepare for it and address that. But we should not be taking it as part of business” said Xian Zhu, Vice President & COO, New Development Bank set up by the BRICS nations. 

Interestingly, China has raised a demand for Free Trade Area among the BRICS nations to remove tariff barriers and India here holds the key to push its own terms with Beijing.

Interestingly while India is still holding its cards on FTA, Russia has mooted China’s Free trade co-operation plan. “If we are talking about the project between BRICS members there are many examples, like we discussed about gold mining project. In Siberia this property belongs to Indian Sun group enterprises while Chinese enterprises, South Africa and Brazil can take part in this project along with the Russian companies. I think this kind of co-operation of BRICS countries will give great impetus and is a good example for other entrepreneurs from different sectors of industry to take part and organise co-operation in wide spread of industries,” said Denis V Manturov, Minister of Industry & Trade.

Russia’s statement could be a challenge for India. Recently Russia conducted a joint military exercise with Pakistan, signalling a change in equation. So its time for India to push its trade diplomacy with the Kremlin. (India Today News)