The forum, co-hosted by China’s Xinhua News Agency and the China Energy Investment Corporation (CHN Energy), is being held under the theme of "BRICS and Africa: Strengthening Media Dialogue for a Shared and Unbiassed Future."
"The purpose of this forum is to facilitate the successful convocation of the BRICS Summit and to further promote communication and cooperation in greater depth among BRICS media and among BRICS countries," said Fu Hua, president of Xinhua News Agency, at the opening ceremony of the forum.
Media outlets of BRICS countries shoulder significant responsibilities in this era and enjoy broad space for cooperation, said Fu, who is also executive chairman of the BRICS Media Forum.
The BRICS Media Forum was proposed by Xinhua News Agency and jointly initiated by mainstream media outlets from Brazil, Russia, India and South Africa, with the forum presidium as its top decision-making body.
ADVANCING BRICS MEDIA COOPERATION
"Since its inception in 2006, the BRICS mechanism has gone through 17 years and has stood the test of changes in the international landscape and become an important platform for emerging markets and developing countries to seek strength through unity," said Hu Heping, executive deputy head of the Publicity Department of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and Minister of Culture and Tourism.
Over the past eight years, the BRICS Media Forum has been operating on a regular basis and at a high level, becoming an important platform for efficient coordination and cooperation among mainstream media of BRICS countries, Hu said.
To advance the high-quality development of cooperation among BRICS media, Fu called for promoting the shared values of humanity, jointly promoting the construction of a more just and equitable international order, better telling BRICS stories in the new era, and jointly promoting cultural exchanges and mutual learning among civilizations.
Media outlets of BRICS countries should work to build a community with a shared future for humanity, promote shared values of humanity, stay committed to peace, development, cooperation, and mutual benefit, and spread the vision of global governance featuring shared growth through discussion and collaboration, said Xinhua president.
He urged media outlets of BRICS countries to actively raise voices for fairness and justice on the international stage, promote the vision of common, comprehensive, cooperative and sustainable security, oppose hegemonism and power politics, and strive to enhance the voices and influence of emerging markets and developing countries, so as to ensure a more just and equitable international order.
The diverse cultures of the BRICS nations enrich global conversations, and the BRICS media advocate for an inclusive, cooperative and just new world order, said Iqbal Surve, executive chairman of Independent Media of South Africa.
The forum sheds light on the challenges facing developing nations, providing them with a platform to express their perspectives and aspirations, Surve said.
ENHANCING VOICE OF BRICS COUNTRIES
"Since its establishment in 2015, the BRICS Media Forum has become an important platform to enhance the voice of BRICS countries," Dakota Legoete, a member of the National Executive Committee of the African National Congress, spoke at the opening of the forum.
While some countries attempt to monopolize the international discourse and weaponize the media to attack other sovereign states, the BRICS media have demonstrated that the media should be committed to promoting world development, rather than becoming a tool to provoke wars, Legoete said.
Media of BRICS countries bear the responsibility of being the "chief storytellers" of BRICS cooperation, Fu said. "We should fully report on the innovative explorations of BRICS countries in their modernization endeavors, tell vivid stories of BRICS countries’ deepening reforms, improving people’s well-being, and developing green energy."
Echoing Fu’s proposals, Wang Min, director of CHN Energy, said media serve as an important force for social progress and media empowerment is indispensable to ensuring energy security and accelerating the green and low-carbon transition in BRICS countries.
Supported and witnessed by the BRICS media, the energy cooperation among BRICS countries has been deepened and the momentum of development has been continuously enhanced, Wang said, noting that CHN Energy has been actively engaging in such cooperation with fruitful results.
Jose Juan Sanchez, chief of Brazil’s financial and agricultural information provider CMA Group, stressed the importance of credible and impartial news information. "Communication among BRICS media is crucial, and the member countries should seek sustainable development in economic, environmental and social areas," he said.
News media produce cultural products and carry the cultural mission of promoting exchanges and mutual learning among civilizations, said Fu, who called for BRICS media outlets to promote equality, mutual learning, dialogue and inclusiveness among different civilizations.
As a member of the forum’s presidium and home to the forum’s liaison office, Xinhua is willing to provide strong support for the effective operation of this mechanism and offer solid support for the steady and sustained progress of media cooperation among BRICS countries, Fu said.
The forum, which runs into Sunday, gathers around 200 participants from around 100 media outlets, think tanks and international organizations from about 30 countries.
At the forum, New China Research (NCR), the think tank of Xinhua News Agency, released two research reports entitled "Toward Modernity: The Value of Xi Jinping’s Economic Thought" and "The ’Second Integration’ that Transforms China — Theoretical Innovation and Practice in Building the Modern Civilization of the Chinese Nation."
(Video reporters: Zhang Zhihuan, Yin Jiajie, Li Shuting, Liu Chunhui, Tian Hongyi; video editors: Liu Ruoshi, Zhang Yuhong, Liu Yutian, Lin Lin).