July 26, 2018 / 1:17 PM / 4 months ago

BRICS bloc signs declaration reaffirming multilateral trade as per WTO rules

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, China's President Xi Jinping, South Africa's President Cyril Ramaphosa, Russia's President Vladimir Putin and Brazil's President Michel Temer pose for a group picture at the BRICS summit meeting in Johannesburg, South Africa, July 26, 2018. REUTERS/Mike Hutchings

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - Leaders of the BRICS bloc signed a declaration supporting an open and inclusive multilateral trading system as envisaged by the World Trade Organization at a summit on Thursday in South Africa.

Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa have found a collective voice championing global trade at the three-day summit, vowing to fight unilateralism and protectionism in the wake of tariff threats by U.S. President Donald Trump.

“We recognize that the multilateral trading system is facing unprecedented challenges. We underscore the importance of an open world economy,” the declaration signed by the five leaders said.

Reporting by Olivia Kumwenda-Mtambo; Writing by James Macharia; Editing by Kevin Liffey

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