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BRICS leaders open 11th Summit in Brazil; key focus on trade, investment, counter-terrorism


BRASILIA: Leaders of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa on Thursday opened the 11th BRICS Summit at the iconic Itamaraty Palace where deliberations are expected to focus on key areas such as trade, investment and counter-terrorism.

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro welcomed Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Presidents of China, Russia and South Africa - Xi Jinping, Vladimir Putin and Cyril Ramaphosa respectively at the palace, headquarters of the Brazilian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Ahead of the summit, the BRICS leaders came together for a joint picture.

"Our diversity is our strength. PM @narendramodi joins other BRICS leaders for a picture-perfect moment," External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said on Twitter.

The theme of the 11th BRICS Summit is 'Economic Growth for an Innovative Future'.

The BRICS comprises Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa. The leaders will continue their discussions on enhancing multilateral cooperation, Prime Minister Modi's office said in a tweet.

According to officials, a BRICS MoU between Trade and Investment Promotion Agencies will be signed and on the conclusion of the Summit, the leaders will issue a joint declaration.

Brazil is the current chair of the grouping which represents over 3.6 billion people, or half of the world population and they have a combined nominal GDP of USD 16.6 trillion.