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The BRICs Leaders gathered for the first time, informally, at the margins of the G-8 Summit (Hokkaido, 9 July 2008). On that occasion, they requested their Foreign Ministers to organize the I BRICs Summit. Since 2009, the Heads of State (Head of Government in the case of India) have met annually (see Summit Declarations and Plans of Action). The BRICs/BRICS Summits, which have always had the presence of all Leaders, have been the following:

  • I Summit: Yekaterinburg, 16 June 2009
  • II Summit: Brasilia, 15 April 2010
  • III Summit: Sanya, 14 April 2011
  • IV Summit: New Delhi, 28-29 March 2012
  • V Summit: Durban, 27 March 2013
  • VI Summit: Fortaleza/Brasília, 15-16 July 2014
  • VII Summit: Ufa, 8-9 July 2015

Welcoming a Brazilian initiative, the Leaders established the practice to meet at the margins of the Financial G-20 Summits. These meetings have facilitated the coordination among the five countries on the G-20 Agenda, particularly the reform of the Bretton Woods institutions (World Bank and IMF). The first meeting was held during the Cannes Summit, in 2011, when the BRICS discussed possibilities of joint action to mitigate the effects of the financial crisis and to support global economic recovery. The following year, in Los Cabos, the Leaders decided to raise their individual contributions to the IMF (China: US$ 43 billion; Brazil, India and Russia: US$ 10 billion each; and South Africa: US$ 2 billion; totaling US$ 75 billion). Such additional contributions were made contingent on the implementation of the IMF 2010 Quota and Governance Reform.

In September 2013, in Saint Petersburg, the BRICS Leaders announced that the initial subscribed capital of the New Development Bank would be of US$ 50 billion, and that the individual commitments of the countries to the Contingent Reserves Arrangement were as follows: China, US$ 41 billion; Brazil, India and Russia, US$ 18 billion each; and South Africa, US$ 5 billion (see press release issued on the occasion). In July 2014, in Fortaleza, the agreements for the creation of the New Development Bank and the Contingent Reserves Arrangement were signed.

The VII BRICS Summit was held in Ufa, Russia in July of 2015. The Ufa Summit was marked by the ratification of the constitutive agreements for the New Development Bank and the Contingent Reserves Arrangement. The first meetings of the Board of Governors and of the Board of Directors were held on the margins of the event. The understandings reached by the BRICS Central Banks during the Summit have made the Contingent Reserve Arrangement fully functional. The Leaders approved in Ufa the "Strategy for BRICS Economic Partnership", a roadmap for the intensification, diversification and strengthening of trade exchange and investment between the five countries. A cultural cooperation agreement and an agreement between the national development banks of the BRICS and the New Development Bank were signed.