The 8th BRICS Summit concluded here on Sunday with Prime Minister Narendra Modi calling upon leaders of the group of emerging economies to double the size of intra-grouping trade to $500 billion by next five years.

“In 2015, intra-BRICS trade stood at about $250 billion. We should set ourselves a target to double this number to $500 billion by 2020,” Modi said addressing the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa) leaders plenary here.

Declaring that in a world of new security challenges and continuing economic uncertainties, BRICS stands “as a beacon of peace potential and promise”, the Indian Prime Minister said that the five-nation group’s work holds much meaning for the developing world.

“In the past year, BRICS have played an active role in shaping the global agenda for change and development. Our association with Agenda 2030, the Paris Climate Agreement, and the Addis Ababa Action Agenda on Financing for Development has been purposeful and productive.

At a meeting earlier in the day, Modi exhorted the BRICS Business Council to work with member countries for strengthening mutual trade and said events like the first BRICS Trade Fair help to generate greater business awareness and commercial exchanges.

Modi said at a meeting of the leaders with the BRICS Business Council.”We count on the BRICS Business Council to work with us to achieve our common aim of strengthening mutual trade, enhancing business opportunities, building investments linkages, promoting innovation and removing bottlenecks to intra-BRICS commerce,”

In the report, the council has recommended the member countries to continue dialogue for a new rating agency for emerging economies and huge scope for intra-BRICS cooperation in infrastructure development and financing, the formation of a group of angel investors was also one of its key recommendations.

With the expansion of the BRICS agenda, the council also emphasised on the need to enhance business cooperation in agriculture by way of sharing of best practices among members.

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