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Manmohan Singh to discuss Arab and North Africa unrest at BRICS summit

New Delhi, Mon, 11 Apr 2011 ANI

New Delhi, Apr 11(ANI): Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will be heading to China's resort city of Sanya on Tuesday to take part in the third BRIC (Brazil-Russia-India-China) summit, which will now be called BRICS after the formal inclusion of South Africa this year.


Ongoing crisis in Arab world and West Africa, which includes tensions in Libya, Yemen, Syria, Tunisia, Egypt, Bahrain has been affecting emerging BRICS economies badly, Arab crisis resulted in sky rocketing oil prices consequently these nations which are heavily dependent on the energy imports are witnessing soaring inflation and spiraling price rise.


Secretary (Economic Relations) in the External Affairs Ministry Manbir Singh said "energy is the very important issue before BRICS countries, energy security, BRICS leaders would like to discuss, there is a feeling of uncertainty in oil prices which has led to rise in prices, this issue I am sure will be discussed by our leaders, but I cant preempt what will be discussed, this is an important issue, this has been flagged by number of countries, I expect that it may come up"


In fact last month in a rare show on unity, Brazil, Russia, India and China jointly opposed Western-led military action in Libya under the principle of the "responsibility to protect in a coordinated manner.


BRIC nations were conspicuously absent when Security Council voted on the imposition of a no-fly zone and the attacks on the government's military positions and forces in Libya.


Russia and China are the permanent members at the United Nations Security Conference and both regard military action in Libya as interference in the internal affairs of UN member states. Whereas India and Brazil wants to remain non interventionist and see the western interference in Libya as breach of sovereignty. It is not yet clear that what line South Africa is going to adopt as it becomes the part of BRIC grouping.


Brazil and India currently hold non-permanent seats and are also campaigning hard for permanent seat - both the countries which have as strong democratic and pluralistic character collectively have become the face of what has been presented as the irreversible shift in global power toward a multipolar world.


BRICS constitute 40 percent of global population, 22 percent of world's GDP, although the grouping so far had very little bearing on the international affairs but now with South Africa as a new entry in the group and China's emergence as a major power, BRICS grouping would like to enlarge its sphere of influence.


G20, Monetary and Financial issues, reforms of Bretton Woods, Doha Development round, achievement of millennium development goal, UN reforms, counter terrorism and are also likely to discussed during the two-day summit.


During the five-day two-nation tour, Singh will also pay a two-day bilateral visit from April 15 to Kazakhstan where the two countries are expected to sign at least six pacts, including an inter-governmental agreement on civil nuclear cooperation. By Naveen KapoorANI)


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