President of the African Development Bank (AfDB), to set the scene for the BRICS summit in Durban on 26-27 March

VENTURES AFRICA – The new world order comes to Durban this week – for the fifth BRICS Summit, and the first in Africa. Dilma Rousseff, Vladimir Putin, Manmohan Singh, Xi Jinping and Jacob Zuma represent a changing world, as gravity and power gradually shift from North to South, and West to East. Between them, they preside over nearly half of the world’s population, and nearly a quarter of its GDP.

As well as Heads of Government, the BRICS business community will also come together in Durban, and all this under the gaze of the world’s media. It is clear that all will pursue themes within themes. In engaging in enlightened shared interest, they will look, too, to their own individual countries’ interest. By coming to Durban, they also draw focus on Africa. In looking at a host of issues – from the world’s hotspots to its backwaters, from green jobs to blue-sky thinking – they will, above all, focus on two: trade and investment.

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