BRICS is the acronym for an association of five major emerging national economies: Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa.

The sixth BRICS summit will take place in the Brazilian cities of Fortaleza and Brasilia. Briefing reporters on Sunday about the visit, Sujata Mehta, Secretary, Economic Relations, who is the Prime Minister's ‘sherpa’ for the meeting, said the BRICS summit has a vast symbolic significance and ‘has its own message’.

Modi's first participation in a multilateral meeting after taking over as Prime Minister will also give him an opportunity to meet with world leaders including Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin apart from leaders of South America.

The leaders of Argentina, Chile, Columbia and Peru have also been invited by Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff to meet the BRICS leaders.

"Modi is expected to leave for Brazil on July 13 and return on July 16," officials said. Answering queries about the summit, Mehta said that India will pursue the issue of UN Security Council reforms in discussions in whatever form.

She said that the issues relating to climate change, BRICS development bank and export credit guarantees were expected to come up for discussion. The proposed bank will provide concessional credit to members and other developing countries. Mehta will take part in negotiations ahead of the summit concerning the declaration.

Modi will have a bilateral meeting with Rousseff during which issues related to trade, investment, health, environment, science and technology will be discussed. On being asked about a bilateral meeting with the Chinese President Xi Jinping, MEA spokesperson Syed Akbaruddin said the schedule was being worked out. "There will be bilateral meeting with other BRICS leaders," he said.

Dinkar Khullar, Secretary (West) in the MEA, said the Prime Minister will have a wonderful opportunity for interaction with the South American leaders on the sidelines of the summit.

Khullar said that the bilateral meeting with Brazil reflects the importance that India attaches to relations with the South American country. He said the meeting with leaders of South American countries will further strengthen India's relations with them.

Answering a query about the Prime Minister's itinerary, he said that the Prime Minister was more concerned about substance than form.

Modi is also expected to have meetings with Russian President Vladimir Putin and South African President Jacob Zuma.

The summit will inaugurate the second cycle of BRICS as each member country has hosted one meeting so far. While the meeting at Fortaleza will have discussions between leaders about the potential of BRICS, the working session between leaders of BRICS and the heads of government of South America will be held at Brasilia on July 16.

As part of BRICS summit, meetings of business forums, trade ministers and business council would be held on July 14.The first summit meeting of BRICS was held in 2009. The countries together account for more than 40 percent of the world's population.


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