Created in June, 2003, with the adoption of the Brasília
the India-Brazil-South Africa (IBSA) Dialogue Forum congregates the three large multiethnic democracies of the developing world. IBSA acts in three main areas: political coordination, sectorial cooperation and cooperation with third countries implemented by the IBSA Fund. Until now, the mechanism has held five summit meetings. The sixth summit is scheduled to be held in 2019:
- 1st IBSA Summit – Brasília, September 2006;
- 2nd IBSA Summit – Pretoria, October 2007;
- 3rd IBSA Summit – New Delhi, October 2008;
- 4th IBSA Summit – Brasília, April 2010; and
- 5th IBSA Summit – Pretoria, October 2011.
Besides the intergovernmental dialogue, the IBSA Summits include seven thematic fora in the following areas: academics, business, small and medium entrepreneurs, women, editors, local government, and parliamentarians.
Since its inception, IBSA has consolidated a large repertoire of common positions in themes such as democracy, human rights, social inclusion and sustainable development. IBSA members are fundamental actors in the discussions on the reform of global governance structures, especially of the United Nations Security Council, and on the 2030 Agenda Sustainable Development Goals.
The Durban meeting of foreign ministers approved the restructuring of the Working Groups, based on the three pillars of sustainable development and with a view to achieving trilateral cooperation initiatives that are more efficient and effective. With the exception of the Working Group on Defense, the other groups were organized in the following categories:
- Social Development (Working Groups on Social Development and Human Settlements);
- Economic Development (Working Groups on Tourism, Trade, Investment and Infrastructure, Science, Technology, Innovation and Health; Blue Economy and Energy);
- Environmental Development (Working Group on the Environment)
The IBSA Fund for Poverty and Hunger Alleviation
As the most visible face of IBSA, the IBSA Fund has been financing, since 2004, projects in countries of lesser relative economic development or emerging from armed conflict, based on the capabilities available in the three countries and on their internal best practices to fight hunger and poverty. Through self-sustainable and replicable projects, the Fund intends to serve as examples of best practices for the fulfilment of the Millennium Development Goals.
The Fund´s operational guidelines are constantly updated in order to mainstream lessons learned from the implementation of projects. The resources are managed by the United Nations Office for South-South Cooperation (UNOSSC) and redirected to projects on a concessional basis. To date, the IBSA Fund has collected US$ 34 million and assigned US$ 32 million for projects in several least developed countries. The commitment of Brazil, India and South Africa to the Fund was ratified in the Durban ministerial meeting held on 17 October 2017, with the signature of the Agreement on the Establishment of the IBSA Fund (initially created on a voluntary basis), whereby each country is committed to making an annual donation of 1 million dollars.
Since its creation, the Fund has approved 26 projects (15 concluded, 8 in progress and 3 approved) in countries of different regions and continents. Highlights among the projects include:
- Improve infrastructure and capacity building in the fight against HIV/AIDS, in Bujumbura (Burundi);
- Reform of the Covoada and Ribeira Brava Health System Infrastructure (Cabo Verde);
- Development of children and teenagers with special needs and their families (Cambodia);
- Agriculture Development (Phase I), in Bissa, N’tatelai and Capafa (Guinea-Bissau);
- Development of Agriculture and Services in Rural Communities (Phase II), in the regions of Bafata, Oio, and Biombo (Guinea-Bissau);
- Collection and Recycling of Solid Waste: A Tool to Reduce Violence and Conflict in Carrefour Feuilles (Phases I and II), Port-au-Prince (Haiti);
- Development of Leadership and Institutional Capacity Building for Human Development and Poverty Reduction, in Freetown (Sierra Leone);
- Building of a multisport center in Ramallah (Palestine).
By virtue of its successful initiatives, the IBSA Fund received the following awards: ‘South-South Partnership for South-South Alliance’, granted by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in 2006; ‘Millennium Development Goals Awards’, granted in 2010 by the NGO ‘Millennium Development Goals Awards Committee’, and the ‘South-South and Triangular Cooperation Champions Award’, granted in 2012 by the United Nations Office for South-South Cooperation (UNOSSC), for its innovative contribution to the triangular South-South cooperation.