Russian President Vladimir Putin commended the BRICS' (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) cooperation, at the 9th BRICS Summit, in the southeast city of Xiamen, Tuesday. Putin noted that since the creation of the BRICS alliance, the volume of the internal trade between the BRICS member states «has grown by more than 50 percent, thus constituting some $235 billion by the end of 2016... Еще». He went on to stress that «a big practical step towards strengthening the role of BRICS entrepreneurial circles will be the signing of an agreement on cooperation between the [BRICS] Business Council and the new Bank of Development». During the BRICS summit, Putin and his counterparts from Brazil, China, India and South Africa are set to discuss the main directions for further cooperation between the countries. A number of bilateral meetings are expected to take place during the summit. Besides the remaining four members of the BRICS, China will also host representatives of five other guest countries, namely Egypt, Kenya, Tajikistan, Mexico and Thailand, in the so-dubbed «BRICS Plus» format.