India and China collaborated in a shrewd diplomatic manoeuvre to prevent Pakistan from attending the BRICS plus gathering last Friday. Unexpectedly, Pakistan attempted to participate in the BRICS outreach event for developing nations, which also featured Algeria, Argentina, Cambodia, Egypt, Ethiopia, Fiji, Indonesia, Iran, Kazakhstan, Senegal, Uzbekistan, Malaysia, and Thailand.
India, however, reacted quickly to obstruct Islamabad. China apparently decided to let India lead BRICS in 2022 and forbade its “all-weather ally” from attending PM Narendra Modi’s speech at the BRICS outreach event. Russia allegedly supported New Delhi’s stance as well, ET has learned.
As you may remember, the Indian ambassador to China met with Foreign Minister Wang Yi before the BRICS Summit to address a wide range of bilateral and global concerns.
Interestingly, unlike other BRICS meet participants, Pakistan does not fall under the definition of developing markets, and its economy is currently facing a severe crisis similar to that of Sri Lanka. Pakistan could even stop making debt payments.
The Pakistani Foreign Office said in a statement on Monday that it had taken note of the fact that this year’s ‘High-level Dialogue on Global Development’ had been hosted as a BRICS side event and that other developing and emerging economies had been invited. Unfortunately, one BRICS member prevented Pakistan from participating.
The decision to hold the high-level dialogue was “based on consultation among BRICS countries,” said Zhao Lijian, a spokesperson for the Chinese foreign ministry, in response to a question from the state-run Associated Press of Pakistan at a regular news briefing on Monday. He did not provide any additional information.
According to reports, China’s decision to oppose Islamabad’s membership into BRICS has angered Islamabad. Beijing is irritated by Pakistani governments’ poor economic management, which has slowed the development of projects related to the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).
The $6 billion rescue package is currently being discussed between Islamabad and the International Monetary Fund. Less than six weeks’ worth of import coverage is still available in Pakistan, whose foreign exchange reserves have reached a catastrophic degree of depletion. Currently, the reserves are less than $9 billion, according to sources in Pakistani media.