By Ben Tavener, Senior Contributing Reporter
SÃO PAULO, BRAZIL – Talks between the five leaders of the BRICS nations of developing economies – Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa – have been dominated by discussions over medium-term investment in the countries’ economies, particularly how the countries can work together to improve infrastructure.
Brazil’s leader President Dilma Rousseff, at the fifth annual BRICS Summit, said she hoped Brazil could count on the other members’ support for investment relating to up to US$4.5 trillion of infrastructure projects in the next five years, Valor Econômico business edition reports.
In particular, the Brazilian president called on China, led by newly-appointed President Xi Jinping, to help, saying she was keen for Brazilian companies to nurture more partnerships with Chinese businesses.
According to those at the summit in Durban, South Africa, President Xi was “interested” in stimulating investment in infrastructure projects in Brazil and neighboring countries.
President Dilma is also said to be pushing for the creation of a special Brazil-China forum of top-level executives to facilitate investments and business between the two countries.
Of special interest for President Rousseff are projects focused on improving highways, ports, airports and energy infrastructure in Brazil.
She said the BRICS must “make every effort” to bolster their own economies and markets, and that emerging economies “cannot allow advanced countries’ problems to create obstacles for economic growth in countries such as ours.”
“Our path is to find new solutions which guarantee more vigorous growth in emerging countries, so as to secure quality job creation,” President Rousseff said, hailing the creation of the new BRICS Development Bank and underlining the important, in her view, of multilateral inter-BRICS cooperation.
In the past few years, Brazil has announced public-private infrastructure to improve everything from roads to ports to telecommunications, totaling billions of reais – many of which promised in time for Brazil’s long-awaited hosting of the World Cup in 2014 and the Olympics in 2016.
President Rousseff has actively encouraged a number of countries to invest in the infrastructure projects in Brazil, including during a visit to Spain in 2012.
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