BRICS nations establishing themselves as economic force: K V Kamath

BRICS countries are establishing themselves as an economic force, eminent Indian banker and New Development Bank chief K V Kamath has said, expressing confidence in the cooperation among the five-nation bloc that will be further strengthened during the Chinese presidency this year.

With China to host the ninth BRICS annual summit in the southeastern coastal city of Xiamen in September, Kamath said Shanghai-based NDB, established by the bloc, plans to showcase its progress to the leaders of the five countries.

The eminent banker said he believes the Xiamen summit will let people know where the BRICS countries stand today, their current agenda and "how we could benefit by working in a cooperative manner."

"Importantly, the summit comes at a time when you can clearly see the five countries establishing themselves as an economic force," he told state-run Xinhua news agency.

He said the cooperation among BRICS nations — Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa — will be strengthened during Chinese presidency over the bloc in 2017.

"The Chinese government has been very hospitable towards the NDB, enabling us to set up and operate the bank in a very short time," Kamath said.

"All of these would not have been possible without the support and guidance we received from China," he said.

This year opens the second decade of the emerging-market bloc.

In the first decade of its existence, BRICS moved forward on the economic front establishing NDB, which was established with initial subscribed capital of $50 billion with a total paid-in capital of $10 billion.

The bank has started disbursing loans for various green infrastructure projects in the five countries.

In December 2016, the NDB signed its first loan agreement, providing 525 million yuan ($76 million) for a solar power project in Shanghai.

"The fact we were able to appraise our first project in a record time has set a new benchmark for the NDB to follow," he said.

Last year, the NDB issued three billion yuan worth of five-year green bonds, its first bond to raise funds worldwide for clean energy projects.

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