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International relations

China calls for expanding BRICS bloc of emerging economies

Beijing diplomat meets with counterparts from Brazil, Russia, India, South Africa

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, left, and Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov attend a 2019 BRICS foreign ministers meeting in Brazil.   © Reuters

(Reuters) -- China wants to expand the group of emerging economies known as BRICS, in the first shakeup of the bloc in over a decade, a senior Chinese diplomat said on Thursday.

Brazil, Russia, India and China initially formed the bloc in 2009, with South Africa joining in 2010.

"China proposes to start the BRICS expansion process, explore the criteria and procedures for the expansion, and gradually form a consensus," Wang Yi, China's state councilor and foreign minister, told an online meeting of BRICS foreign ministers.

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