BRICS - Current Affairs Questions and Answers

1)   Union Cabinet cleared a Memorandum of Cooperation in tax matters on 19th July between India and which group of nations?

Answer  Explanation 


The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has given the approval for the signing of Memorandum of Cooperation (MOC) in respect of tax matters between India and the Revenue administrations of BRICS countries.

The BRICS countries are Brazil, Russian Federation, China and South Africa

The MoC aims to further promote cooperation amongst the BRICS Revenue administrations in international forum on common areas of interest in tax matters and in the area of capacity building and knowledge sharing.

It envisages regular interaction amongst the heads of Revenue administration of BRICS countries to continue discussion on common areas of interest and strive towards convergence of views and meeting of the Experts on tax matters to discuss the contemporary issues in areas of international tax.

In addition, the MoC accords confidentiality and protection to information exchanged under this MoC.

The MoC will stimulate effective cooperation in tax matters.

The collective stand of BRICS countries can prove to be beneficial not only to these countries but also to other developing countries in the long run in tax matters being steered by the G20.

Need for MOC

  • The Heads of Revenue of the BRICS countries have been meeting regularly to discuss the potential areas of cooperation in tax matters and to exchange opinions.
  • They also discuss views based on the existing commitment to openness, solidarity, equality, mutual understanding, inclusiveness and mutually beneficial cooperation, as stated in the Goa Declaration issued on October 16, 2016.
  • The BRICS countries have identified four areas of mutual interest on which understanding and cooperation can be further strengthened.
  • The heads of Revenue of BRICS countries in their meeting held on the sidelines of FTA plenary at Beijing, China in May, 2016 decided to sign a MoC outlining these areas of cooperation.

2)   Who has been appointed chairperson of BRICS Business Council?

a. Iqbal Ali
b. Iqbal Ghate
c. Iqbal Surve
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Iqbal Surve

Indian-origin South African billionaire Iqbal Surve has been appointed as chairperson of the country’s BRICS Business Council.

This has underlined the need for strengthening trade ties with countries like India and China.

Straight after his appointment by the South African government, Surve, headed to New Delhi for the mid-term meeting of the Brics Councils from other countries in the bloc – Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.

He highlighted importance to strengthen ties with China and India.

Surve, the chairperson of Sekunjalo Group and Independent Media, has interests in media, technology and healthcare.

He is a founding member of the BRICS Business Council and the Clinton Global Initiative; he additionally serves on a number of multi-lateral institutions and global organisations.

Surve served as the first chairperson of the World Economic Forum Global Growth Companies Advisory Board and vice chairperson of the Global Agenda Council for Emerging Multinationals.

He is a participant member of the G20 meeting and serves on B20 Task Teams as well as the Unga private sector forum.

BRICS Business Council: Know More


The BRICS Business Council was established during the Fifth BRICS Summit held on 26th - 27th March 2013 in Durban, South Africa.
The objective of creating the council was to constitute a platform which will:

  • Promote and strengthen business, trade and investment ties amongst the business communities of the five BRICS countries;
  • Ensure that there is regular dialogue between the business communities of the BRICS nations and the Governments of the BRICS countries; and
  • Identify problems and bottlenecks to ensure greater economic, trade and investment ties amongst the BRICS countries and recommend solutions accordingly.

3)   9th BRICS Summit's first Sherpas meeting was in _______

a. Nanjing
b. Xinjiang
c. Shanghai
d. Beijing
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Nanjing

The 9th BRICS Summit’s first Sherpas Meeting took place in Nanjing.

This is the capital of east China’s Jiangsu Province.

The theme of meeting was concentrated on ‘BRICS: Stronger Partnership for a Brighter Future’.

The 2-day meeting saw participation of more than 100 participants, including coordinators from all sides, foreign diplomats, and representatives from the BRICS New Development Bank (NDB).

It covered priority areas of political affairs, economy and culture for BRICS cooperation, especially in the areas.

The Sherpas Meeting is considered as a major channel to push forward BRICS cooperation.

It aimed at political preparation for the leaders’ meeting for the 9th BRICS Summit to be held in Xiamen, China.

Nanjing: Know More

  • Nanjing, capital of China’s eastern Jiangsu province, is roughly 300km up the Yangtze River from the city of Shanghai.
  • It was the national capital during part of the Ming dynasty.
  • It was earlier romanized as Nankin/Nanking.

4)   Where was the BRICS meeting of revenue heads and tax experts held?

a. Delhi
b. Mumbai
c. Chennai
d. Kolkata
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Mumbai

A Joint Communique was also issued at the conclusion of the two-day BRICS meeting of Revenue heads and Tax experts at Mumbai, India. The meeting was held from 5-6 December 2016.

Its primary objective was to discuss potential areas of cooperation in tax matters. It aimed to initiate an exchange of ideas, opinions, relevant knowledge and experience regarding the same.

All heads vowed to continue their support to all actions and international initiatives taken towards achieving a universally transparent tax system.

They also reasserted their commitment towards actions taken to ensure fairness of the same system, especially in the case of prevention of base erosion, shifting of profits, and exchange of tax information and capacity building of the developing countries.

The leaders expressed extra concern on the process of erosion of the tax base due to aggressive tax practices including incomplete disclosure of information and committed to eliminate the concern by working in solidarity with each other.

They reaffirmed their support for the global Common Reporting Standard for automatic exchange of information and set 2018 as the deadline for its implementation.

The heads jointly declared their continued commitment towards the promotion of closer cooperation on issues of mutual concern and interest.

5)   BRICS Nations inked three agreements during which summit held in Goa, India on 16th Oct, 2016?

a. 8th
b. 9th
c. 10th
d. 11th
Answer  Explanation 


BRICS nations namely Brazil, India, China, Russia and South Africa on 16th Oct 2016 inked three agreements to boost bilateral cooperation– these agreements were inked in Goa during the 8th BRICS summit

  • The summit was held from 15 to 16 Oct under the theme Building Responsive, Inclusive and Collective Solutions

    List of MoUs signed by BRICS countries includes:

  • MoU for establishment of BRICS Agricultural Research Platform
  • MoU on mutual cooperation between diplomatic academies
  • Regulation on customs cooperation committee of the BRICS
  • BRICS members are also part of the G-20
  • As of 2015, the given BRICS countries represent 3.6 billion people or half of the world population
  • All 5 members are in the top 25 of the world by population and four are in the top 10
  • The 8th BRICS summit was attended by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Brazilian President Michel Temer, Russian President Vladimir Putin, Chinese President Xi Jinping and South African President Jacob Zuma.
  • Towards the end of the summit, the 109 point declaration was established
  • The states indicated it was the responsibility of all states to prevent terrorist action from their territories
  • They condemned some recent terror attacks such as the Uri terror attack in India
  • The leaders also condemned terrorism in all its forms and stressed there can be no justification for such attacks
  • They acknowledged that international terrorism, such as IS constitute an unprecedented threat to peace and security
  • All 5 nations reaffirmed the commitment to increase effectiveness of the UN counter terrorism framework
  • Goa Declaration also called for reforms in the UN including the Security Council to increase the representation of developing countries
  • They also highlighted the importance of public and private investments in infrastructure such as connectivity
  • Apart from this, leaders of the BRICS nation also appreciated the progress in the strategy for BRICS Economic Partnership and emphasised the importance of the BRICS roadmap for trade, economic and investment cooperation until 2020.
  • BRICS leaders also welcomed the signing of the MoU between BRICS nations National Development Banks and the New Development Bank
  • BRICS Grouping welcomed the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and said growth was imperative in a sustainable and inclusive fashion.
  • Summit’s focus was also on enhancing P2P contact through activities such as Film Festival, Young Diplomats Forum, Youth Summit and U-17 Football Tournament.
  • The ninth BRICS summit will be hosted by China in 2017
  • Leaders also held an outreach summit with leaders of BIMSTEC or Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation member countries
  • The BIMSTEC grouping comprises Bangladesh, India, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Bhutan and Nepal.
  • The grouping also examined possibilities of expanding trade and commercial ties between the member nations of the two religious groupings

6)   Who won the first BRICS U-17 football tournament?

a. Russia
b. China
c. Brazil
d. India
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Brazil

Brazil on 15th oct 2016 won the first BRICS U-17 football tournament in the title clash played at Nehru stadium of Goa

  • Brazil defeated South Africa 5-1
  • Earlier in the match for the 3rd place between Russia and China, Russia defeated China 2-1.
  • The 10 day BRICS tournament transcends the traditional sphere of interaction and opens new vistas in the field of sports
  • The sports tournament spurs India’s impetus to Khelo India and Mission 11 Million.

7)   India is the __ largest holder of US government securities.

a. 12th
b. 13th
c. 14th
d. 15th
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: 12th

India is the 12th largest foreign holder of the US government securities with exposure to the tune of 118.9 billion USD as of March end

  • Despite the reduction of exposure to USD 1.245 trillion China is currently the top holder of securities in March 2016, according to data released by the US treasury department
  • China owned bonds valued at USD 1.252 trillion
  • China is followed by Japan which owns securities of around USD 1.137 trillion
  • India is the 12th largest overseas holder of securities one place ahead of Saudi Arabia
  • Saudi Arabia’s holding stood at USD 116.8 billion on March 31
  • Saudi Arabia’s holdings were lumped together with that of other oil exporting nations such as Iraq and Venezuela
  • In March, India owned American government securities of around USD 118.9 billion
  • In terms of exposure, other countries ahead of India include Brazil, Ireland, Switzerland, Hong Kong, Luxembourg, Taiwan and Belgium
  • Among BRICS grouping Brazil ad Russia fell to USD 246.4 and 86 billion respectively
  • Treasury department also said that short term and long term US securities as well as banking flows were a monthly net Treasury International capital outflow of USD 98.3 billion

8)   To boost trade among BRICS nations, India has planned to organise the trade fair for the bloc at which venue?

a. Goa
b. Delhi
c. Mumbai
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 


To boost trade among the BRICS nations, India will, for the first time, organise a trade fair for the bloc including BRICS

  • Intra BRICS trade in 2014 was USD 297 billion- less than 5 % of the USD 6.5 trillion worth trade that the five countries had with the world that year
  • Goods imports from the world onto the BRICS countries amounted to USD 3.03 trillion in 2014 while global goods exports of BRICS nations were USD 3.47 trillion that year
  • The first BRICS Trade Fair and Exhibition will be held from Oct 12=14 in the NCT ahead of the BRICS political summit in Goa (Oct 15-16 2016)
  • Initiative was proposed by PM Modi in 2015
  • The focus of the fair is Building BRICS- Innovation for Collaboration
  • The fair will promote intra BRICS economic engagement and showcase 20 key sectors including aerospace, auto, agro processing, chemicals, green energy, healthcare, railways and textile
  • Startups and innovators will also showcase technology to solution providers in areas such as healthcare, education,waste management and energy efficiency
  • Leaders from Bangladesh, Myanmar, Bhutan, Nepal and Thailand have also been invited to the fair

9)   What is the focus area of the BRICS Young Scientists Conclave?

a. Computational Intelligence
b. Energy Solutions
c. Affordable Healthcare
d. Only a and b
e. All the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: All the above

Department of Science and Technology, GoI, under the BRICS framework is hosting a 5 day event where a group of 50 scientists and researchers from BRICS nations will meet in Bengaluru from 26-30th Sept 2016.

  • It will be organised and coordinated by National Institute of Advanced Studies, Bengaluru
  • Meet would provide a platform for engaging, connecting and networking among young scientists for a solution driven approach
  • Participants will be drawn from science, engineering and allied disciplines
  • Focus of the conclave will be on three topics or themes: Computational Intelligence, Energy Solutions and Affordable Healthcare
  • BRICS young Scientists conclave takes centerstage during India’s chairmanship of BRICS in 2016 under the focal theme of “Building Responsive, Inclusive and Collective Solutions
  • Event will be organised under the BRICS Young Scientist Forum
  • It was initiated at the 2nd BRICS Science, Technology and Innovation Ministerial Meeting at Brasilia in March 2015
  • Respective science and technology & innovation ministries of BRICS countries are the leading coordinating organisations for the firm on co-investment and co-ownership basis
  • Conclave aims at building a BRICS Innovation Corps which individually or collectively has specialised capability to work on scientific innovations and technological solutions to accelerate change through better quality of life and higher incomes for citizens of the region
  • This will pave the way for the creation of strong generation of science and technology leadership that can accelerate change collectively.

    Some of the topics to be covered by the Conclave include:

  • Interdisciplinary Science for Society and Humanity,
  • A Scientific Identity for BRICS,
  • Traditional Science and Indigenous Knowledge and Science,
  • Technology and Social Equity,
  • A session on ‘Talent Hunt’ is also being organised under which about 15 ideas shall be presented on 3 identified themes of the Conclave.

    Two reports will be released during the Conclave, namely

  • “BRICS Science and Technology Enterprise Partnership”
  • The second report titled “Hampi: Splendours of a World Heritage Site”

10)   First BRICS Wellness workshop was concluded on 11th Sept 2016 at which city?

a. Bengaluru
b. Chennai
c. Hyderabad
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Bengaluru

The first BRICS Wellness Workshop concluded on 11th Sept 2016 in Bengaluru, Karnataka. A National Fair on comprehensive Indian Medicine System (AROGYA) was inaugurated in the city. 4 day event was organised by AYUSH ministry in collaboration with Research and Information System for Developing countries.

  • The BRICS wellness workshop was organised in partnership with BRICS nations.
  • It promotes knowledge sharing and pushing forward AYUSH initiatives in BRICS countries which will help in globalisation of AYUSH.
  • Workshop was designed to have sessions pertaining to Traditional Systems of Medicine, Trade and Economy, Wellness and SDGs, Wellness indicators for BRICS, Wellness and Tourism among others
  • It also included a session on WHO strategy for Traditional Medicine.
  • AROGYA fair provides a exposure for importers and manufactures of traditional medicines or raw materials in BRICS to have firsthand experience of Indian TraditionaL Medicinal production

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