Leaders of the emerging countries joined hands calling for a new world order amid the global financial crisis and boosting security and trade at two summits on Tuesday.
In the opening speech at Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) summit in Russia, host President Dmitri Medvedev said the SCO would develop tools to overcome the current global financial crisis, proposing to convene an experts' meeting to tackle the crisis. Representatives from major banks and other financial institutions would attend, he said.
SCO leaders would not only consider ways to overcome the financial crisis, but would also consider building the basis for future cooperation.
Medvedev also described Urals of Yekaterinburg as the epicenter of world politics in his remarks, adding that the need for major developing world nations to meet in new formats was obvious.
Following the SCO summit, BRICs (Brazil, Russia, India and China) leaders attended the first four-nation summit in Yakaterinburg.
BRICs called for a reform of international financial institutions and sweeping changes to the United Nations, giving a bigger role to Brazil and India and a stable and predictable currency system, according to a draft communique.
Medvedev told a news conference that existing reserve currencies, including the U.S. dollar, had not performed their function and said it was time for change.
The dollar fell 0.9 percent against a basket of major currencies on world markets after Medvedev's comments. The slide underlines the likely sensitivity of the FX market to comments emerging from today's meeting, analysts at Barclays wrote.
China would extend a $10 billion loan to a regional group, President Jintao Hu said in the summit, which also includes Russia and four Central Asian states. Hu said the loan is intended to shore up the struggling economies of its members amid the global financial crisis.
China, as the largest holder of US Treasury bills, has been very cautious about the proposals for diluting dollar dominance.
However, US government data showed that for the first time in 11 months China's holdings of US Treasury bonds fell to $763.5 billion in April. The figure, down from March's $767.9 billion, was the lowest since June 2008.
The decline in the China holding seems to stem from net selling of Treasury bills, said Chirag Mirani of Barclays Capital Research.
On the whole, foreigners decreased holdings of Treasury bills by $44.5 billion in April, the data showed.
The summits were attended by heads of state from SCO member countries and leaders from SCO observer nations. Also present at the meeting are Hamid Karzai, president of Afghanistan, a guest country of the SCO, and representatives of the United Nations and some other regional and international organizations.
Between them, the BRICs represent around 40% of the world's population and 15% of its GDP. The SCO, a security and economic co-operation forum founded in 2001, is led by Russia and China consisting of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. Mongolia, India, Pakistan and Iran are observers of the organization.