The BRICS Business Council met in Ufa on Wednesday to discuss ways to “strengthen business and investment contacts and implement large joint projects of the BRICS countries”.
The Council is reviewing proposals from the business community from the five countries on cooperation with the New Development Bank that began official operations on Tuesday.
At the end of the meeting the heads of the Business Council national teams also signed a declaration on investment cooperation.
Trade between the five countries reached $291 billion in 2014.
The share of BRICS countries in global GDP has reached 30 per cent.
Participants that included South African Brian Molefe, acting CEO at Eskom, Sergey Katyrin, head of Russian Chamber of Commerce, India’s Onkar Kanwar urged BRICS leaders to remove excessive administrative barriers to trade and economic cooperation.
Katyrin said it was too early to introduce an all-out visa-free regime but noted that simplifying business travel between the five member states is being considered.
The Business Council annual report will take into account the results of the earlier meetings of the Business Council’s working groups in Moscow on cooperation in infrastructure, manufacturing, finances, energy and green economy.
Later on Thursday, the Business Council representatives will meet with the heads of state of BRICS to submit the results of their work over the past year and map out priorities for the near future.
Established in 2013, the BRICS Business Council serves as a platform for boosting economic, trade, business and investment ties among business communities in the five member states.