The Voice from Non-BRICS Countries

After lengthy discussions between the BRICS countries and the five invited countries, the BRICS summit has come to an end. The BRICS Leaders Xiamen Declaration summarized the success of BRICS cooperation over the past ten years, and laid out a new blueprint of pragmatic cooperation for a stronger and deeper BRICS partnership in various fields in the years to come. The international community is very much focused on this document, especially the emerging and developing countries.

In the forum venue, numerous journalists are busy sorting through documents and reviewing the thoughts and ideas that have been discussed during the meeting. Among this huge group are a special team,  they all come from non-BRICS countries – countries that are not even part of the “BRICS-Plus” grouping. But they have still come all the way to the summit, writing articles and spreading their voices, communicating with other media so that their countries can keep up with developments and perhaps even take a ride of the BRICS express.

Kimeng Hilton from the Cameroon Tribune (Cameroon)tells us that there were 27 journalists from Africa. “We are a big group, we are journalists from Africa, and there are also journalists from Southeast Asia and Latin America. There are almost fifty of us, and we are all involved in an exchange program with the association under our foreign ministry. These are the people who brought us here, so we have been in China for some time – since February. That’s why they brought us to be part of this summit, and we have also attended the Belt and Road summit. We didn’t come direct from Africa; we have been here in China for some time.”

Some of the group have traveled to many places in China, and have seen the great changes there. They are eager to introduce China to their people, who still tend to have a stereotypical view of China.

Panduro Julio, a journalist from Diario el Peruano (Peru) explains: “Looking at China and the world, we have traveled to places like Xiamen, Yunnan, and Shanghai, for example, and it is interesting to get to know different aspects of China. For many years China was not close to the world, and now China is opening its doors, so it is a new world for us to learn about. For example, for my country, you know, Peru and its people, if you ask them what they know about China, they might say – I know the Great Wall, I know the pandas, I know Kong Fu like Bruce Lee, from many years ago. So our work here as journalists is to write articles, many articles, and to publish them in our country, so in this way people can get to know more about today’s China.”

Raza Khan is a reporter from Dawn News (Pakistan). “I work in Beijing and have traveled through various provinces – seven in total. I have been to  Hainan, Henan, Anhui, Hubei, Fujian, and Sichuan, as well as Tianjin. ”

Speaking of their reaction to this year’s BRICS Summit, they all seem very positive.

“This BRICS has given us a good chance to learn about the economic development of the five countries,” says Julio.

“I think in the next 5 years the BRICS will grow as China grows,” says Raza Khan. ”This is a very important organization because China is there and China is involved in this activity, arranging business with other countries. This is a very important summit, as there is a convergence between these economies,  they are helping each other, and they are talking about trade and business. And now we hear talk of BRICS+, so they want to add more countries, more emerging countries. Coming from Pakistan, I am hoping that in the future Pakistan can also join BRICS; it has been said that BRICS can be extended to other countries as well, that more countries can join. We saw this year that Pakistan and India joined the Shanghai Cooperation arrangement, so Pakistan and India are now also part of that organization. I do hope that there can be more countries in BRICS; I really hope that in ten years BRICS will have a new bright future, and that it will help the emerging and new economies to stand on their own feet and develop further.”

“I am a journalist from Ghana,” says Edmund Smith-Asante of the Daily Graphic. “I’ve been in China for several months. Since February, I’ve been working on BRICS, which as you know is a body that contains five countries – Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa. South Africa is the African representative, and being here as an African I know that BRICS has a lot to offer the continent. I’m here to gather information because I am a journalist, and I can see that BRICS+ means that not only the five countries in the existing structure can benefit, but other countries too. So I believe that our country can gain from BRICS; I know that decisions will be made at the end of the conference. And I believe that there will be a lot of cooperation going on between China and Africa. There’s a lot of financing and infrastructure that needs to happen, and BRICS will be heavily involved in this. My being here will be very much beneficial to my country, and to Africa as a whole.”

All of those people were very excited to have been part of this important forum,all have high hopes that the BRICS express will carry more and more passengers to their intended destinations.