Prime Minister Narendra Modi participating in the 12th BRICS Summit (File Photo, Image credit: The Indian Express)

BRICS Summit: Xi, Modi virtually come face to face on first COVID-19 anniversary

For the first time after Chinese attempted intrusion into Ladakh, Chinese President Xi Jinping and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi virtually came face to face on Tuesday evening. The occasion was the 12th BRICS Summit hosted by Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Though terrorism, trade and other bilateral issues came up during the summit the common concern was the spread of the Corona Virus pandemic. Incidentally the virtual meet was held on November 17, exactly a year after the first case of COVID-19 was reported in Wuhan city of China.

 Speaking on the occasion Chinese President Xi Jinping said that: “As we speak, Chinese companies are working with their Russian and Brazilian partners on Phase III clinical trials of vaccines, and we are prepared to have cooperation with South Africa and India as well. “

On the other hand Indian Prime Minister Modi called for a meeting of National Security Advisers of all the BRICS countries to discuss a counter-terrorism action plan. He also called for reforms in the Security Council and added that the United Nations and other international bodies are not working according to the contemporary reality. 

Stating that 42% of the world’s population resides in the BRICS countries he hoped that the member nations would play a significant role in the economic recovery of the post-COVID-19 world. 

On the issue of development of vaccines for COVID-19 Modi emphasised the issue of cooperation among the BRICS countries. India is negotiating with Russia for the field trial of Sputnik V that is expected to begin in Uttar Pradesh next week. President Jair Bolsonaro of Brazil and President Cyril Ramaphosa of South Africa also took part in the summit.

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