BRICS Bank to Be Discussed at March Summit, Russia Official Says

Leaders from the world’s biggest emerging markets will ask their finance ministers to study a proposal for a bank funded exclusively by their nations at a summit in March, a Russian official said.

India has proposed setting up a multilateral bank that would be exclusively funded by developing nations and finance projects in those countries. The plan comes as leaders from Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa seek a bigger say in running the International Monetary Fund and other multilateral bodies to match their rising economic heft.

The creation of the bank “could mean some serious contributions of capital, so everything needs to be calculated and analyzed,” Andrey Bokarev, the head of international financial relations at Russia’s finance ministry, said from Mexico City yesterday, at the end of the Group of 20 summit.

Leaders from the so-called BRICS group will meet in New Dehli March 29, their fourth-ever summit. The proposal for a BRICS bank builds on a pledge leaders from the five nations made at their last meeting in April 2011 in China, when they promised in a statement to “strengthen financial cooperation among the BRICS Development Banks.”

The IMF projects 2012 economic growth at 3 percent in Brazil; 3.3 percent in Russia; 7 percent in India; 8.2 percent in China; and 2.5 percent in South Africa. The U.S. growth this year will be 1.8 percent while the 17-nation euro area will shrink by 0.5 percent, according to the IMF estimates released last month.

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