The BRICS nations comprising Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa have vowed to deepen financial cooperation and customs cooperation.

Chinese state media reported that BRICS countries agreed to strengthening coordination on macroeconomic policy at a virtual meeting of finance ministers and central bank governors of the five-member bloc on Monday which was co-chaired by China’s central bank governor Yi Gang and finance minister Liu Kun. The meeting discussed topics such as improving the Contingent Reserve Arrangement and the cooperation of transition finance and other areas.

Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman, who participated virtually in the meeting, said that India’s growth will be driven by fiscal spending. Sitharaman said BRICS should continue to serve as a platform to engage in dialogues and facilitate exchange of experiences, concerns and ideas for rebuilding a sustainable and inclusive growth trajectory.

Customs authorities of BRICS countries also vowed to deepen cooperation on intelligent customs at a virtual meeting on Tuesday. Customs cooperation between BRICS countries has seen fruitful results since the establishment of the cooperation mechanism in 2013, while bilateral trade has maintained steady growth, said Sun Yuning, deputy head of the General Administration of Customs of China.

China’s bilateral trade with BRICS countries totaled 490.42 billion U.S. dollars in 2021, up 39.2 percent year on year, higher than the overall level of China’s foreign trade in the same period, according to official data. All parties should gradually improve the intelligence level of customs infrastructure, supervision methods and administrative management, and form cross-border coordinated governance among border administration departments, Sun said.

Against current risks and challenges, the participants pledged to ensure that the customs authorities of BRICS countries continue to work together to safeguard the international supply chain and promote rapid economic and trade recovery among BRICS countries.

China is this year’s chair of the BRICS and is expected to hold the annual summit of the five-member bloc this month. Chinese State-run news agency reported, China’s central bank governor Yi Gang spoke highly of the concerted efforts made by all BRICS countries in achieving positive progress in financial cooperation.