Xi to host summit for Brics emerging economies

President Xi Jinping will host a virtual summit with top leaders from Russia, India, Brazil and South Africa next week, Xinhua news agency reported on Friday.

The influential club of Brics emerging economies, formed in 2009, is home to more than 40 percent of the global population and accounts for nearly a quarter of the world's gross domestic product.

It comes after Xi in a call on Wednesday assured his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin that Beijing will support Moscow's core interests in "sovereignty and security".

Xi will chair the virtual Brics summit on June 23, Xinhua said, citing Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying.

This year's theme focuses on "fostering high-quality Brics partnerships [and] ushering in a new era for global development", Hua said.

China said at a Brics foreign ministers meeting in May that it wants other emerging economies to join the grouping, though it is unclear whether new members have been invited.

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"China proposes to start the Brics expansion process, explore the criteria and procedures for the expansion, and gradually form a consensus," Foreign Minister Wang Yi had said. (AFP)

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