Vice President Padalko: BRICS Enlargement Is an Opportunity for Development of a New Bigger Market

In an exclusive interview with TV BRICS, Vice President of the Chamber Vladimir Padalko spoke about how the expansion of BRICS, economic integration in the EAEU, SCO and other associations will affect the conditions for doing business in Russia and the economy as a whole.


Vladimir Padalko, Vice President of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Russian Federation. Padalko has been working in the Chamber system since 1995. In the period from 1996 to 2012, he headed representative offices abroad. Including in East Asia. He was a member of intergovernmental commissions of Russia and Asian countries. Member of expert councils of international business organizations.


– Russia’s trade turnover with the CIS countries, SCO, BRICS is actively growing. In particular, new economic records are being set in relations with China, India, and Brazil. How are the conditions for doing business in the international arena changing today and how do they affect the dynamics of the development of economic relations between states?

– At the end of 2020, we felt that we had truly formed the Eurasian Economic Union. <…> The leaders of the five countries adopted a universal declaration on economic development until 2030-2045. <…> We have a single energy space.

This is probably the most important thing for us, because the cost of all goods and services will depend on the cost of energy resources. And this applies not only to exports. Now, within the five countries, we have agreed on uniform tariffs for energy resources and 90% have switched to mutual settlements in national currencies. <…>


– What barriers exist today in trade between the CIS countries, are there any, in your opinion, and what needs to be done to overcome them?


– When at least 10 countries enter into dialogue, each of them has its own national and other priorities. Therefore, of course, questions will arise. Over time, we will regulate the systems of patenting, licensing, issuing certificates, and technical regulations.

This is painstaking work that cannot be completed within a short period of time. <…>


– After new countries join BRICS, is the Chamber of Commerce and Industry expecting a sharp increase in trade turnover, and what place does Russian business occupy in the markets of these new BRICS member states? How might its position change after the expansion of the association?

– This is the prospect of forming a large market represented by all countries joining the BRICS family. I know that about 25 countries still express their intention to join BRICS. This is welcome! In recent years, trade turnover between the Russian Federation and the BRICS countries has been growing by an average of 35 percent annually.

China, of course, is in first place. There are currently nine working groups in the BRICS Business Council. Some are involved in energy, others in transport, and others in finance. In all these areas, colleagues from the countries of the association will develop conditions that will allow us to operate goods and services more freely. <…> We now have very good prospects for growth in trade turnover.

– The idea of a large Eurasian partnership was aimed at uniting projects and organizations such as the SCO, ASEAN, BRICS and some others. How can the interests of all parties be taken into account in this interaction?

– The coronavirus pandemic has spurred us to take a new look at cooperation in the field of healthcare, medicine and supplying each other with medicines. We found an opportunity to sit down at the negotiating table and quickly find out where in the law there are barriers that do not allow, for example, Russian products to enter the markets of Latin American or African countries. In this situation, we quickly found a solution and signed an agreement. Thus, the whole world was provided with certain types of vaccines. Regarding business councils, both the SCO and BRICS have a working group that determines points of contact. <…>

– Let's return to the topic of settlements in national currencies. What is their current share in the total trade turnover between different countries?

– The share of turnover within the five EAEU countries is 90 percent. As for Russia's foreign trade, we carry out more than 60 percent of all transactions in national currencies. In BRICS we have reached the 50 percent mark.

– What steps, in your opinion, can speed up and stimulate this process?

– Being an entrepreneur, I would answer this question this way: interbank cooperation and administration.

– If we look into the future, which areas of economic cooperation will be drivers of international trade development in the coming years?

– The main drivers of development will be the raw materials component, global digitalization, as well as climate and ecology. It is on this agenda that other areas depend: healthcare, food industry, agriculture.