In a significant development that reflects the growing influence of the BRICS nations, Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa have commenced discussions on a potential expansion plans to include new member countries. The move comes as several nations express a keen interest in joining the influential bloc, which has emerged as a key player in global economic and political affairs.
The BRICS nations, known for their collective efforts to promote cooperation and development, have been actively working towards expanding their membership. The group’s annual summit, held virtually this year due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, witnessed detailed deliberations on the matter.
BRICS Nations responding to increasing demand
South Africa’s Foreign Affairs Minister, Naledi Pandor, has revealed that the BRICS countries are formulating guidelines to address the growing interest from countries seeking membership in the bloc. The minister stated that the BRICS group has been attracting a lot of attention from various countries, and its representatives are exploring ways to respond to the interest. Pandor added that many nations are seeking a modern, inclusive, and multipolar platform that focuses on the common good.
Naledi Pandor, the Minister of International Relations and Cooperation of South Africa, has disclosed that the BRICS nations, which include Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa, are formulating guidelines to address the growing interest from countries seeking to join the economic bloc on the discussion of expansion plans. This year, South Africa holds the BRICS presidency.
In a discussion titled “Strengthening Partnerships for a Fairer and More Equitable Global System” held by the South African line ministry, Naledi Pandor stated on Monday, as reported by Telesur:
“BRICS is attracting a lot of interest from a number of countries, and our sherpas are working on the concept of how the group can respond to this interest. We hope that our leaders will present final guidelines at the conclusion of the BRICS summit. “
With a focus on expanding their global influence, the BRICS countries have been actively working towards broadening their membership of the economic bloc. Anil Sooklal, South Africa’s ambassador to the BRICS group, disclosed in April that the bloc receives applications for membership on a daily basis. Sooklal revealed that 13 countries have officially submitted their requests to join, while an additional six have expressed their interest informally. Notably, countries such as Saudi Arabia and Iran have shown their keenness to become part of the BRICS bloc.
BRICS Nations aim to drive forward-looking international development agenda
Emphasizing the significance of promoting global cooperation, Pandor emphasized the need to establish influential alliances that work in collaboration with the United Nations to advance an inclusive and forward-thinking international development agenda. She acknowledged that the BRICS group possesses the potential to fulfill this transformative role.
As stated by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of South Africa, “The growing interest in the alliance shows that many countries are looking for a multipolar forum that is modern, inclusive, and focused on the common good.”
Furthermore, she highlighted the tangible benefits derived from South Africa’s partnership with BRICS, highlighting that the country has witnessed substantial advancements in various sectors. Notably, the total trade between South Africa and BRICS countries has risen from $25 billion in 2017 to $36 billion in 2021. Additionally, she emphasized that South Africa has successfully secured over $5 billion in funding from the New Development Bank (NDB) of BRICS, which has been allocated to crucial infrastructure projects in renewable energy, water, and other vital sectors.
In addition, the BRICS group is actively engaged in the development of a shared currency aimed at reducing dependency on the U.S. dollar among its members. This significant matter is anticipated to be a focal point of discussion during the upcoming BRICS leaders’ summit scheduled for August.
In conclusion, the BRICS nations are witnessing a surge in interest from countries seeking to join the bloc, prompting discussions on expansion plans. Recognizing the need to enhance diversity and representation, the original members have initiated a thorough assessment process for potential candidates. Membership in the BRICS bloc offers numerous advantages, including access to a vast market, opportunities for trade and investment, and a platform for dialogue on global issues.