Brasília, Brazil, 18 March, 2015
1. In line with the Fortaleza Declaration and the Action Plan adopted at the 6th BRICS Summit, on 15 July, 2014 held in Brazil, we, the Ministers for Science, Technology and Innovation of the Federative Republic of Brazil, the Russian Federation, the Republic of India, the People’s Republic of China and the Republic of South Africa, met in Brasília, Brazil, on 18 March, 2015, for the 2nd BRICS Science, Technology and Innovation Ministerial Meeting.
2. Recalling the theme of the 6th BRICS Summit “Inclusive Growth: Sustainable Solutions”, we strongly believe that Science, Technology and Innovation play a central role in promoting inclusive macroeconomics and social policies and in the imperative to address challenges to humankind posed by the need to simultaneously achieve growth, inclusiveness, environmental protection and preservation.
3. We reaffirm that sharing and exchanging information on science, technology and innovation policies and strategies; leveraging contacts and programmes aimed at enhancing collaborative innovation projects among BRICS countries; and the formulation of joint long-term problem-focused cooperation programmes shall constitute the central modalities of this cooperation. In order to facilitate this, appropriate mechanisms of cooperation shall be elaborated and established within the implementation of the BRICS Science, Technology and Innovation initiatives.
4. We welcome the outcomes of the 1st BRICS Workshop on Prevention and Mitigation of Natural Disasters, held in Brasília, on 7-8 May 2014; of the BRICS Seminar on National Systems of Innovation, held in Brasília, on 25-27 March 2014; of the Meeting of BRICS Solid State Lighting Working Group, held in Guangzhou, China, on 7-9 November 2014; and of the International Conference on Water Management and Ecology in the Framework of Russian Federation participation in BRICS, held in Moscow, Russia, on 4 June 2014.
5. Following the instructions of the leaders of BRICS member countries, mentioned in paragraph 67 of the Fortaleza Declaration, we express our satisfaction in signing the Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation in Science, Technology and Innovation (MoU), which establishes a strategic framework for cooperation in priority areas amongst the BRICS member countries.
6. In order to foster further collaboration and achieve concrete results from the MoU directives, we agree to develop and negotiate a Work Plan 2015-2018, based on the Brazilian proposal, during the Russian presidency of BRICS, to be approved in the next BRICS STI-SOM and signed at the next BRICS STI Ministerial Meeting. The Work Plan will focus on the five priority areas and leadership established previously by each country, namely: (a) prevention and mitigation of natural disasters, to be led by Brazil, (b) water resources and pollution treatment, to be led by Russia, (c) geospatial technology and its applications, to be led by India, (d) new and renewable energy, and energy efficiency, to be led by China, and (e) astronomy, to be led by South Africa. New initiatives agreed by the BRICS countries will also be included in the Work Plan.
7. We take note of the following announcements: South Africa will convene the 1st Meeting of the BRICS Working Group on Astronomy shortly after this Ministerial; Russia will host International Scientific and Experimental Conference on Water: Technologies, Materials in Industry and Energy Processes in July 2015, in Ufa; China will host the 2nd Meeting of the BRICS SSL Working Group in November 2015; India will host the BRICS Working Group on Geospatial Technology Application for Development in March 2016. We also welcome the Brazilian-Russian proposal, discussed on the occasion of the 4th STI-SOM, to start negotiations among BRICS countries with a view to establishing biomedicine and life sciences as a new priority area for cooperation.
8. The Work Plan will ensure the development of science, technology and innovation cooperation through the launch of a BRICS Research and Innovation Initiative, which shall cover actions including: (a) cooperation in the framework of major research infrastructures; (b) coordination of existing large-scale national programmes of BRICS countries; (c) setting up a Framework Programme for funding multilateral joint project for research, technology commercialization and innovation; and (d) establishment of a joint Research and Innovation Networking Platform.
9. We support the creation of a BRICS Young Scientists Forum proposed by India, which intends to establish a platform for young students of science, engineering and applied disciplines as well as for those pursuing research careers in the age group of 22-35 years to gather for: (a) addressing the needs for advancement of skills, research competencies, career, talent and next generation scientific leadership; (b) sharing scientific research results and experiences; (c) discussing novel ideas in emerging frontline fields of S&T; (d) analyzing trends and features of globally important scientific issues; (e) suggesting measures to enhance trans-continental mobility in their scientific research careers.
10. To increase the competitiveness of the BRICS economies on the global arena, we commit to supporting the BRICS Economic Partnership Strategy, currently under negotiation, which includes Science, Technology and Innovation as a priority. Long-term cooperation in these areas will help bridge the scientific and technological gap between BRICS and developed economies and provide a new quality of growth based on economic complementarity.
11. We encourage increased participation of business, academia and other relevant stakeholders for science, technology and innovation development among BRICS countries.
12. We welcome the holding of the 4th BRICS Science, Technology and Innovation Senior Officials Meeting in Brasília, on 17 March 2015, and instruct the Senior Officials to organize the 5th BRICS STI-SOM prior to the 3rd Ministerial Meeting.
13. Russia, India, China and South Africa extend their warm appreciation to Brazil for hosting the 2nd BRICS Science, Technology and Innovation Ministerial Meeting and the 4th BRICS Science, Technology and Innovation Senior Officials Meeting.
14. Brazil, India, China and South Africa convey their appreciation to the Russian Federation for its offer to host the 3rd BRICS Science, Technology and Innovation Ministerial Meeting and the 5th BRICS Science, Technology and Innovation Senior Officials Meeting in 2015 and extend their full support to that end.