Egypt seeks stronger cooperation with the BRICS bloc: FM Shoukry

Ahram Online , Saturday 3 Jun 2023

Minister of Foreign Affairs Sameh Shoukry said that Egypt seeks stronger cooperation with the BRICS bloc, stressing that the current global crises require urgent dialogue among developing countries on ways to promote peace and prosperity.

FM Shoukry
Egypt's FM Sameh Shoukry during his participation at the event of the Friends of BRICS Foreign Ministers Meeting virtually. Photo: Egyptian Foreign Ministry


In a speech delivered virtually on Friday to the meeting of the Friends of BRICS Foreign Ministers Meeting, held in Cape Town, South Africa, FM Shoukry noted that the global economic system is facing multiple crises, which are impacting food security, energy, debt levels, and climate.

Her reaffirmed Egypt's commitment to a strong relation with the BRICS bloc and other developing countries, highlighting their shared positions on global economic challenges and opportunities.

The BRICS bloc, which now consists of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, is considering expanding its membership, and a growing number of countries have expressed interest in joining.

He also emphasized the importance of multilateral action and cooperation based on principles of national sovereignty, mutual respect, common benefits, and solidarity.

Financing mechanisms’ reform

The existing global financing gap for development necessitates discussions on reforming existing multilateral development institutions and establishing new financing mechanisms to bridge this gap, Shoukry said.

Egypt's membership in both the New Development Bank (NDB) of the BRICS bloc and the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) demonstrates Cairo’s support for the efforts of the two banks in financing infrastructure in the developing world, particularly in Africa, the Egyptian foreign minister noted.

However, he added, these efforts should not replace the need for reforming multilateral development financial institutions (DFIs) to effectively address the priorities of developing countries.

Egypt' played a key role during its presidency of the 27th UN Climate Conference (COP27) in leading a multilateral consensus on advocating for the reform of international financial institutions (IFIs) and multilateral development banks (MDBs), stressed Shoukry, who was the president of the COP27.

The objective from such reforms is to facilitate the provision of financing through grants and soft loans, as well as initiate discussions on financing losses and damages to support developing countries impacted by extreme weather events, he noted.

Dangerous debt levels

Shoukry also stressed during his speech on the significance of enhancing the efficiency and comprehensiveness of debt management mechanisms.

On this note, the Egyptian foreign minister cautioned against the detrimental effects of the debt crisis on low- and middle-income countries.

The burden of debt threatens the progress made by these countries in eradicating poverty over the past decades, he said.

Shoukry reaffirmed Egypt's commitment to promote the interests of developing countries on the international stage and support South-South cooperation, adding that Cairo looks forward to strengthening cooperation with the BRICS bloc.

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