In a historic development, five nations – Saudi Arabia, Iran, Egypt, Ethiopia, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) – have formally joined the BRICS group of emerging nations, as announced by South Africa’s foreign minister, Naledi Pandor.
The expansion of BRICS, initially comprising Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa, comes after a summit held last year, where invitations were extended to new members. Minister Pandor revealed that Russia, set to assume the chairmanship of the bloc from South Africa, received written confirmations from the aforementioned countries.
Argentina, however, decided not to act on its previous application to become a full member of BRICS, a move accepted by the bloc, according to Minister Pandor’s statement during a press briefing in Pretoria.
This development highlights the growing influence and appeal of the BRICS bloc on the global stage, with a total of 10 member nations now actively engaged in fostering cooperation and collaboration across various sectors.
As the bloc expands, discussions among BRICS foreign ministers are underway to create a model for partner countries, allowing 17 nations expressing interest in joining to participate in BRICS activities. Additionally, plans for a framework enabling the use of local currencies for inter-BRICS trade are in progress, challenging the current predominantly dollar-based international payment system deemed “unfair and costly” by the bloc.
The move marks a significant step in reshaping the geopolitical landscape, reflecting the evolving dynamics of international relations and economic partnerships among emerging nations.