Has China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) usurped Brics as China’s flagship forum? And if so, what does this mean for future Brics co-operation? These are key questions leaders Michel Temer (Brazil), Vladimir Putin (Russia), Narendra Modi (India) and Jacob Zuma have had to consider at the meeting with their heads-of-state counterpart, China’s Xi Jinping, at the group’s annual summit in Xiamen, China. Brics was established nearly a decade ago, shortly after the global financial crisis. At the time, the blame for the crisis was placed on the West and the global financial system it had created after the Second World War. By 2012, spurred on by their fast economic recovery after the crisis, Brics appeared to almost rival the G-8 in global influence. Brics aimed to re-write global financial rules and norms through the creation of the New Development Bank and its Contingent Reserve Arrangement, poised to challenge their Bretton Woods counterparts, the World Bank and the International Mon...

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