Serrari Group

Amidst an atmosphere of clarity and purpose, the BRICS alliance, comprising Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa, has firmly asserted its dedication to championing the interests of the developing world. The group’s message, delivered by South African diplomat Anil Sooklal at a recent conference hosted by Bloomberg in Johannesburg, resonates with a mission of collaboration rather than competition with other global powerhouses.

Dispelling misconceptions that BRICS was engineered as a counterbalance to Western dominance, Sooklal emphatically stated, “Contrary to an unfortunate narrative, BRICS is not anti-West, nor is it an attempt to rival the G7 or the Global North. Our purpose is to champion the agenda of the Global South and contribute to a more inclusive, equitable, and just global framework.”

In the lead-up to its annual summit, set to convene in Johannesburg next week, BRICS finds itself at a pivotal juncture. Discussions will revolve around the potential expansion of its membership, with a significant presence of approximately 40 heads of state and government already confirmed. Forecasts suggest that this number could even escalate to 50, signifying the alliance’s growing influence.

Sooklal’s sentiments echo the clarifications made by South Africa’s Foreign Minister, Naledi Pandor. Pandor reasserted that BRICS does not bear an anti-Western or pro-Russia sentiment. “Mischaracterizing BRICS as pro-Russia or anti-West is grossly inaccurate,” she emphasized. Pandor’s stance underscores the importance of Western trade partners in South Africa’s economic trajectory, particularly China and the United States.

Even amidst thriving trade relationships with China and the US, South Africa has navigated external pressures, most notably from the US, to reconsider its utilization of Huawei technology. Furthermore, South Africa’s stance on Russia’s Ukraine conflict has been the subject of scrutiny from Washington.

As the countdown to the BRICS summit commences, the five member nations—Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa—have set the stage for robust discussions. An atmosphere of meticulous scrutiny will envelop the summit, as the participating nations lay out stringent criteria for potential new members. Minister Pandor disclosed that the alliance has received 22 formal applications and over 20 informal requests from countries aspiring to join the prestigious bloc.

The central tenet of BRICS remains steadfast: advancing the Global South’s interests and nurturing an equitable and inclusive global architecture. The collective economic strength of the BRICS members represents a significant 31.5% of the global GDP, while they collectively account for an impressive 40% of the world’s population. BRICS, established in 2006, has consistently attracted developing countries, showcasing its commitment through the establishment of a development bank and contingency reserve arrangement to support member nations and emerging economies.

The underlying vision of BRICS, encapsulated in the 2009 Yekaterinburg summit’s communique, revolves around promoting dialogue and collaboration in an open and proactive manner. The ultimate goal is to serve the collective interests of developing nations, aspiring to foster a world characterized by enduring peace and shared prosperity.

With the 15th BRICS summit on the horizon in Johannesburg, the discourse around expansion takes center stage. As the alliance emphasizes incremental, proactive, and pragmatic cooperation, BRICS continues to reshape the landscape of global collaboration, reiterating its unwavering commitment to advancing the Global South’s interests on a global platform.

By: Montel Kamau
Serrari Financial Analyst
15th August, 2023

photo source Google

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