Katyrin: Breakthrough in BRICS Economic Cooperation Possible by End of the Year

Based on the results of the work during the year of Russia's chairmanship in BRICS, we would like to see the sustainable activities of the BRICS Business Council for 10 countries in all areas and working groups. This was stated by the President of the Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry Sergei Katyrin at the TASS press center on April 2.

A meeting of the press club of the Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry was held at the TASS press center on the topic “Development of BRICS trade relations in the agro-industrial complex in new economic conditions.” Its participants were the Chairman of the BRICS Business Council in 2024, President of the Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry Sergei Katyrin, Deputy General Director of PhosAgro PJSC for sales and marketing, Deputy Chairman of the working group of the BRICS Business Council on agribusiness Mikhail Sterkin, Senior Vice President of the Resurs Group of Agricultural Enterprises for external relations and GR Dmitry Antonov.
Sergei Katyrin noted that with regard to Russia’s chairmanship in BRICS, a certain breakthrough can be made in each area not only in the field of agriculture, but also in ensuring mutual settlements and logistics. In each area, there are developments that should be transformed into a new quality, including at the government level.
As Sergei Katyrin noted, Russia’s trade turnover with its BRICS partners amounted to a record $294 billion in 2023 (41.4% of the country’s total foreign trade) and increased 2.4 times compared to the level of 2019-2020. According to him, Russian agricultural exports to the BRICS markets are actively growing - in 2023 they exceeded $9 billion, which is 2.6 times higher than in 2019.
“The BRICS association, having expanded from 2024 to include net grain importers – Egypt, Ethiopia, Iran, Saudi Arabia and the UAE, has almost equalized the production and consumption of key grain crops within the group,” he stated.
Taking into account the expansion of BRICS, grain production by the group will reach 1.23 billion tons per year (44% of the world), and consumption will be as close as possible to production - 1.22 billion tons (also 44%). A similar situation will occur for wheat: production will be 376 million tons (48%), and consumption will be 371 million tons (47%). For corn, production will be 493 million tons, consumption – 479 million tons.
Sergei Katyrin named mutual settlements and logistics as the most pressing issues of cooperation within BRICS. According to him, the share of the dollar in mutual settlements between the BRICS countries is only 28.8%, the rest is accounted for by national currencies. According to the head of the Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the most promising direction in settlements is the use of digital assets.
Mikhail Sterkin said that since 2019, the PhosAgro group has been heading the Russian part of the Working Group on Agriculture of the BRICS Business Council. Its activities are aimed at developing environmentally and climate-smart agriculture in the BRICS countries. It is planned to implement a whole block of activities aimed, first of all, at strengthening food security in the countries of the association. Including for these purposes, he said, the company took the initiative to hold a round table in Moscow for the ministers of agriculture of the BRICS countries.
Also, he continued, it was possible to agree with the BRICS partners to conduct educational activities based on the educational platform “Pro Agro Lecture”. In fact, this platform from the PhosAgro project is becoming a joint educational project of the BRICS member countries in the field of modern agricultural technologies, he specified.
Dmitry Antonov said that in March of this year, at a meeting of the President of the Russian Federation with farmers in Stavropol, the proposal of the Union of Exporters to create a BRICS grain exchange was discussed.
“We support this idea and propose, by expanding the list of goods, to create on the basis of BRICS an exchange market for trading agricultural crops, vegetable oils, meat, sugar, fertilizers, biofuels and other products using similar instruments - through futures and options linked to clearing currencies , or to digital currencies within the BRICS framework,” he noted.
By Nail Shakhvaliyev 
Press Service of the Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry