China helped India keep Pakistan out of the BRICS Plus event

In a clever diplomatic move, India worked with China to bar Pakistan from attending the BRICS Plus event last Friday. Pakistan made surprising attempts to participate in the BRICS event for emerging countries, including Algeria, Argentina, Cambodia, Egypt, Ethiopia, Fiji, Indonesia, Iran, Kazakhstan, Senegal, Uzbekistan, Malaysia and Thailand.

However, India has responded quickly to blockade Islamabad. As the BRICS presidency for 2022, China reportedly agreed with India and prevented its “all-weather ally” from attending the BRICS outreach event addressed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. New Delhi’s position was also reportedly backed by Russia, ET has learned.

It is recalled that ahead of the BRICS summit, the Indian envoy to China met with Foreign Minister Wang Yi to discuss a range of bilateral and international issues.

Interestingly, unlike other participants in the BRICS meeting, Pakistan does not fit into the emerging markets category and its economy is staring at a major crisis like Sri Lanka’s. Pakistan could even default on loan repayments.

In a statement, Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry said on Monday: “We noted that this year a ‘High-level Dialogue on Global Development’ was held as a BRICS side event, to which a number of developing and emerging countries were invited… Regrettably, one member (from BRICS) has blocked Pakistan’s participation.”

When questioned on the matter by the state-owned Associated Press of Pakistan at a regular news conference on Monday, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian replied that the decision to hold the high-level dialogue was “based on consultations between the BRICS countries” but did not do so in detail.

Islamabad is reportedly angered by China’s position in blocking its entry into BRICS. Beijing has been frustrated by how governments in Pakistan have mistreated the country’s economy and slowed progress on projects related to the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

Negotiations are ongoing between Islamabad and the International Monetary Fund to resume the $6 billion bailout. Pakistan’s foreign exchange reserves are depleted to critical levels and the country has less than six weeks of import coverage remaining. According to Pakistani media reports, the reserves are currently under US$9 billion.

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