SA Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition Talks Changing World at BRICS Business Forum
19:23 22.08.2023 (Updated: 19:24 22.08.2023)
© AFP 2023 MARCO LONGARISouth African Minister of Trade and Industry Ebrahim Patel (L) greets South African President Cyril Ramaphosa (R) during the 2023 BRICS Summit at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg on August 22, 2023
© AFP 2023 MARCO LONGARI
On August 22-24, BRICS leaders are meeting in Johannesburg, South Africa, for the 15th BRICS Summit, where they will discuss trade, political and economic cooperation, as well as de-dollarization of global trade. Moreover, they will consider increasing the group's membership to include more growing economies.
Ebrahim Patel, Minister of Trade, Industry, and Competition, officially launched the BRICS Business Forum on August 22. The meeting drew 1 200 attendees from the grouping's member states – Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, as well as from a number of African countries.
President of the New Development Bank, Dilma Rousseff, Brazil's Minister of Finance, Fernando Haddad, Mozambican Industry and Commerce Minister, Silvino Augusto Jose Moreno, and the leaders of the respective BRICS Business Council Chapters were among the distinguished guests.
Minister Patel praised South Africa's export successes, saying that the country exported items worth 2 trillion South Africa's rand last year, accounting for roughly one-third of the country's GDP.
The minister noted that today's world order is changing dramatically.
"Today, the world is more polarised, climate change is more pressing, and the speed of technological innovation is increasing rapidly; these trends in turn are reshaping our economies and societies in more profound ways than many could project," he stated.
According to the minister, the classical type of business "is no longer an option", creativity and adaptability to a world marked by instability, unpredictability, complexity, vagueness are needed.
Patel emphasized the BRICS nations' aggregate economic prowess, which, according to him, account for more than a quarter of global economic production.
The minister also stated that the creation of key organizations such as the New Development Bank was highly important, highlighting the necessity of partnerships for policy discussions and information sharing. Moreover, Patel emphasized the bloc's adherence to a world's vision based on the right to grow independently of others.
Minister Patel praised the African Continental Free Trade Area, which brings together 54 countries and provides a platform for African industrialization and innovation.
According to him, Africa is a worldwide force of invention and industrialization, rather than merely a raw material provider.
Despite the world's problems, Minister Patel expressed the opinion that daring persons may create the future. He urged the BRICS forum to examine how the grouping's enterprises and firms may expand and flourish via cooperation.
He voiced support for investment and trade methods that help emerging countries industrialize and improve their wellbeing.