BEIJING (Reuters) - China will dedicate itself to “perfecting” the role developing countries play in international affairs to give them better representation and a greater say, President Xi Jinping said ahead of a summit of BRICS nations in Brazil.
China has already started doing this by promoting international development banks which will either be led by China or will have a very strong Chinese role, as opposed to Western-dominated institutions like the World Bank.
Brazil, China, India, Russia and South Africa are due on Tuesday to sign off on a new development bank being launched by the BRICS emerging market nations.
Officials from BRICS nations have said Shanghai will likely be the headquarters, but an official involved in talks on the bank told Reuters late on Monday in Brazil there still was no agreement among the five on where the lender will be located.
China is also planning an Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank.
Xi, in an interview with South American media released by China’s Foreign Ministry, said China would try to better play the role of a responsible major power and promote the rights of the developing world.
“We will ... dedicate ourselves to perfecting the international system of governance and proactively push for expanding the representation and right to speak for developing countries in international affairs,” he said.
“We will come up with more Chinese proposals and contribute China’s wisdom,” Xi added, without elaborating.
But China faces deep suspicion about its motives, not least from another BRICS member, India, and there have also been concerns in the group that China could hijack the new bank to serve its own interests.
Xi appeared to dismiss these concerns, saying China did not believe it was destined to dominate others just because of its growing strength.
China’s moves to assert its claims of sovereignty in the disputed South and East China Seas, as well as its growing military might, have unsettled the region and caused concern in Washington.
“The Chinese people love peace. In the blood of the Chinese people there are no genes for invading others or dominating the world. China does not acknowledge the old logic of ‘when a country is strong it must dominate’,” Xi said.
“China will resolutely pursue the path of peaceful development, to proactively seek a peaceful international environment for its own development, and will use its own development to promote world peace,” the president added.
In a meeting with Indian Prime Narendra Modi in Brazil, Xi invited India to become a founding member of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, the official Xinhua news agency reported.
“The two countries should join hands in setting global rules, so as to raise the voice of developing countries,” Xinhua cited Xi as saying.
Xi’s trip to the region also takes in Argentina, Venezuela and Cuba, where he is expected to sign a series of trade deals.
Reporting by Ben Blanchard; Editing by Richard Borsuk