BRICS – Full Form, Headquarters, Summit List, Objectives, BRICS UPSC

By BYJU'S Exam Prep

Updated on: November 14th, 2023

BRICS is an acronym for Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa. These members are the leading determinants of economic growth and significantly influence regional affairs. BRICS primarily focuses on subjects related to peace, security, development, and collaboration. The BRICS Summit began in 2009, and annual meetings are still held as formal summits today. The BRICS was established by Jim O’Neill, he assumed that the development of these countries will occur at a faster rate.

BRICS is an essential topic and an important part of International Relations and holds a significant role in the IAS Prelims and Mains exams. Here in this article, you will get all the essential information regarding the countries involved, the objectives, key features, and the BRICS Summits.

What is BRICS?

BRICS is an acronym for Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa. In 2001, Jim O’Neill, an economist at Goldman Sachs, came up with the term “BRIC” (without South Africa). He said that by 2050, the four BRIC economies would rule the world economy. In 2010, South Africa joined the list.

  • BRICS is a grouping of the world’s most powerful emerging markets.
  • The four emerging economies of the world Brazil, Russia, India, and China were collectively termed “BRIC” by British economist Jim O’Neill in 2001.
  • BRICS, an acronym for “B-R-I-C-S,” is used to rotate the chairmanship of the forum every year. India is the chair for 2021.
  • In 2014, the leaders of the BRICS countries signed an agreement establishing the New Development Bank in Fortaleza (Brazil) (NDB – Shanghai, China).

Structure of BRICS

Below mentioned is the basic overview of BRICS for a better understanding. Walk through the table provided below to get complete information about the BRICS full form, and countries and also get knowledge about the last summits.

BRICS Highlights Details
BRICS full form Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa
BRICS Headquarters BRICS Tower, Shanghai, People’s Republic of China
Countries Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa
First Summit June 23, 2022
Established 16 June 2009

BRICS Summit 2023

The BRICS Summit is an annual meeting of the leaders of the five member countries: Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa. The purpose of the summit is to discuss issues of mutual interest, including economic cooperation, trade, investment, and political coordination.

It is expected that the BRICS Summit 2023, which will be the 15th BRICS Summit, will take place in South Africa’s Durban sometime in August this year.

BRICS 2022

The 14th BRICS Summit was held on 23rd-24th June 2022, it was chaired by China. It was conducted in virtual mode. There were discussions on the humanitarian situation prevailing in Ukraine and extending support to them.

The BRICS summit also discussed terrorism and the issues of Afghanistan. An initiative has been led towards building up anti-corruption practices by educating the masses.

There is a formulation of the Digital Economy Working Group to safeguard consumers in the era of e-commerce. The concerns were raised for international drug trafficking. The issues that were emphasized in the 14th BRICS summit have been illustrated herewith-

  • Economic Recovery after COVID: Since the pandemic has hit numerous parts of the world. It has affected and impacted the economy as well. The formulation of macroeconomic policy cooperation can address the issues of the economy. The summit reiterated the importance of continuing the BRICS Economic Partnership Strategy 2025. The expansion of the New Development Bank in terms of membership has also led to strengthening the institution’s impact.
  • Russia-Ukraine Crisis: BRICS summit decided to assist and cater to humanitarian aid. The summit also motivated communication between Russia and Ukraine despite geopolitical issues.
  • World Peace: The importance of World Peace was reiterated by the Summit after the Russia-Ukraine war. The chairperson of the Summit, the President of China requested to adopt China’s Global Security Initiative.
  • Anti-Terrorism Treaty: The Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism has been adopted and implemented under the UN’s framework. This act will focus on combating biological and chemical terrorism.
  • Anti-Corruption: The Summit also reiterated the importance of uplifting and strengthening anti-corruption practices. It has led an initiative to combat corruption practices by educating the masses and leading numerous programs.
  • Protecting Customers in the e-Commerce Era: The summit acknowledged the need of safeguarding customers in the era of e-commerce which has led to the establishment of the Digital Economy Working Group.
  • Strengthening Trade: The Summit supported and decided that there will be a surge in the collaboration pertaining to trade activities. As prescribed by the BRICS Framework for Cooperation on Trade in Services, there will be a collaboration of the BRICS business council with the BRICS national focal points.

BRICS 2021

The 13th BRICS Summit was hosted by India. India got the chance to host the summit 2021 in September 2021 after 2012 and 2016. The 14th summit was conducted in a virtual mode.‘BRICS @ 15: Intra-BRICS Cooperation for Continuity, Consolidation and Consensus’ was the theme for the 13th Summit. The theme was the reflection of the BRICS approach that aims to focus on the fundamental principles of cooperation based on Consensus, consolidation, and continuity. The BRICS Summit 2021 can be summarised as-

  • Summit was headed by the Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi.
  • Theme: BRICS @15: Intra-BRICS Cooperation For Continuity, Consolidation, and Consensus.
  • In this summit, new possibilities for vaccine capabilities were determined.
  • Along with Vaccine capabilities, new strategies were opted to counter terrorism.
  • At the end of the Summit, the Declaration of New Delhi was adopted by all the leaders. They committed to reforming the multilateral system and reinforcing it. It includes the World Trade Organisation and the United Nations as well for effective global governance.

13th BRICS Summit – New Delhi Declaration

The 13th BRICS Summit was a successful event that came up to the BRICS Counter-Intelligence Initiative, and the BRICS Vaccine Research and Development Centre, and at the end of the Summit, all the leaders from the respective countries adopted the New Delhi Declaration for global reform.

“We call for refraining from violence and settling the situation by peaceful means. We stress the need to contribute to fostering an inclusive intra-Afghan dialogue so as to ensure stability, civil peace, law, and order in the country,” the BRICS said.

The main aim behind opting New Delhi Declaration in the summit was to settle down the terror attacks in Afghanistan. Along with this, the community also condemned the attack on Kabul airport by the terrorists because of which there were a lot of death and injuries.

BRICS Summit List

The 14th BRICS Summits have been held over a span of 12 years and it was conducted on June 23, 2022, over a virtual conference. Here is a detailed description of the BRICS summit list that has been provided-

BRICS Summit Year Host Country Focused Areas
1st BRICS Summit 2009 Russia Reforms of International Financial Institutions. Issues arising from the financial crisis of 2008.
2nd Summit 2010 Brazil Discussions among agriculture ministers about the agricultural development of reputable countries. Multiple BRICS Cooperative Institutions will be launched. National Security Advisors and a Think Tank Seminar were also on the agenda for the summit. The ratification of a Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation between the national development banks.
3rd BRICS Summit 2011 China South Africa joins the group. Fresh Ideas for Business in Africa. Trying to get the UNSC to change.
4th Summit 2012 India The New Development Bank was first proposed by India. Infrastructure and sustainable development projects in third-world and emerging countries will be funded by setting up a BRICS Bank.
5th BRICS Summit 2013 South Africa The $100 billion BRICS Contingent Reserve Arrangement (CRA) was launched. The Business Council of the BRICS Countries (BRICS) was established. A group called the BRICS Think Tank has been formed.
6th Summit 2014 Brazil Inclusive growth and sustainable solutions were the focus of the conference. It was agreed to establish agreements for the financing of infrastructure and sustainable development projects in emerging nations.
7th BRICS Summit 2015 Russia Accepted the CRA and the New Development Bank’s agreements on their constitutions. The Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) and the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) have had a joint summit.
8th Summit 2016 India The Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Corporation (BIMSTEC) met jointly at this summit.
9th BRICS Summit 2017 China Discussion about EMDCD. The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development is discussed.
10th Summit 2018 South Africa The 4th Industrial Revolution is the subject of discussion. Discussions relating to sustainable development and climate change.
11th BRICS Summit 2019 Brazil “Economic Growth for an Innovative Future” was the rallying point. BRICS passed the Declaration of Brasilia.
12th Summit 2020 Russia “BRICS Partnership for Global Stability, Shared Security, and Innovative Growth” is the theme of the XII BRICS Summit.
13th BRICS Summit 2021 India The Theme for the XIII BRICS Summit is “BRICS@15: Intra-BRICS Cooperation”.
14th Summit 2022 China “Foster High-Quality BRICS Partnership, Usher in a New Era of Global Development”

Background of BRICS

In their 2001 global economic paper, Goldman Sachs used the acronym BRIC for the first time. Based on economic projections, the four economies would be among the world’s largest in the next 50 years or so. The group was made official when the BRIC foreign ministers met for the first time in September 2006 in New York. At a meeting of BRIC foreign ministers in New York on September 21, 2010, it was decided to make BRIC into BRICS by adding South Africa.

Objectives of BRICS

BRICS aims to increase economic and political stability. It is believed that by the end of 2050, these countries will be the main places where products, services, and raw materials come from. The main objectives of BRICS can be summarised as under-

  • The main goal is to increase, deepen, and broaden cooperation among its member countries in order to promote growth that is sustainable, fair, and good for everyone.
  • All of the members’ growth and progress are taken into account.
  • To ensure that the economic strengths of each country are used to build relations and eliminate competition where possible.
  • BRICS is becoming a new and promising diplomatic and political group with goals that go far beyond the original goal.
  • Initially, it was only expected to solve global financial problems and change the way institutions worked.

Features of BRICS

The BRICS cooperation has influenced and impacted numerous niches, such as the Economical sector, security, politics, etc. The key features of the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa) that make it a successful community are:

  • In total, the BRICS countries account for 41% of the global population, 24% of the global GDP, and 16% of global trade. The BRICS is a group of five major developing countries.
  • It excludes any country from the European Union or the United States.
  • In 2008, after the economic recession, Goldman Sachs came up with the concept of BRICS.

Impact of BRICS Cooperation

The BRICS cooperation works in different sectors. It can be categorized into- The economical sector, Interaction between people, Functioning together with security and politics, and Mechanism of Collaborative Efforts. It can be explained as:

Economical Sector

The events of the BRICS Trade Ministers take place both on the sidelines of other multilateral meetings and prior to the summits.

  • Trade and investment between the BRICS countries are growing at a rapid rate, as is economic cooperation across a wide range of sectors.
  • The BRICS Business Council, the Contingent Reserve Agreement, and the New Development Bank will collaborate on innovation and strategic and customs cooperation.
  • Economic and Trade Cooperation agreements have been signed.
  • Economic cooperation and an integrated trade and investment market will be achieved through these accords, which are mutually beneficial to the countries involved.

Interaction Between People

BRICS members have agreed that it is important to improve exchanges between people and to work more closely together in areas like culture, sports, education, film, and youth.

  • The aim is to bring people from the BRICS countries closer together and help them learn more about each other in the spirit of flexibility, participation, diversity, and mutual learning.
  • New friendships and deepening relationships and mutual understanding between the people of the BRICS countries.
  • People exchanges include the Parliamentarians’, Trade Union Forum, Civil BRICS, Young Diplomats Forum, and Media Forum.

Functioning Together With Security and Politics

Achieving peace, security, and development, and working together will make the world more fair and equal.

  • BRICS gives countries the chance to share policy advice and communicate about the best ways to deal with domestic and regional problems.
  • Obtaining the world’s political system is restructured so that it is more balanced and built on the idea of multilateralism.

Mechanism of Collaborative Efforts

Formal diplomatic contact between the nations. Institutional involvement, such as state-owned companies and business councils. Participation in civil society and people-to-people organizations.

New Development Bank

The New Development Bank was established under the 6th summit in Fortaleza. It lays importance on channelizing the resources for development and achieving sustainable development goals. It has its headquarters in Shanghai, China.

  • This reiterates the cooperation among the BRICS nations. It caters to regional financial institutions to cater to global development.
  • The New Development Bank funded numerous projects such as the Delhi-Ghaziabad-Meerut Regional Rapid Transit System, Mumbai Metro rails, etc.
  • The major areas of the implementation of the NDB include irrigation, transport infrastructure, economic cooperation, and sustainable urban development.

What is BRICS CRA?

The BRICS nations signed the CRA at the Sixth Summit. The CRA stands for Contingent Reserve Arrangements. The objective of the BRICS CRA is to assist and cater to times of financial instability and BOP crisis. It aims to implement and strengthen financial stability.


The members of the forum take turns being the forum’s chairman every year, as shown by the acronym BRICS. In the last ten years, BRICS cooperation has grown to include more than 100 meetings each year in a variety of fields.


BRICS is one of the important topics for the IAS exam. Many questions have been asked about the BRICS in the UPSC Prelims and Mains. To answer the questions in the exams, one must be fairly knowledgeable about the topics. You can get the detailed syllabus and start reading through the NCERT books for UPSC for in-depth knowledge about the topic.

Questions on BRICS

The candidates must refer to the previous year papers in order to get a crystal clear ideation of the types of questions asked in the exam. The BRICS questions have been presented here, that have been curated by the experts to assist the candidates in structuring a strategy for solving the questions. This is an essential and important topic for the upcoming exam.

The following BRICS question was asked in Civil Services Exam 2015 Prelims Part A.

Question: The Fortaleza Declaration, recently in the news, is related to the affairs of- [A] ASEAN, [B] BRICS [C] OECD [D] WTO

Correct Answer is: Option B – BRICS

Question: With reference to the BRICS countries, take into consideration the following statements;

  1. The First Summit of BRICS was established in Rio De Janeiro in 2009.
  2. South Africa was the last country to get associated with the BRICS.

Which of the following statements is/are correct? [A] 1 only, [B] 2 Only, [C] Both 1 and 2, [D] Neither 1 and 2.

Answer: Option B [2 Only] South Africa was the last country to get associated with the BRICS.

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