What Is The ‘BRICS’ Group Of Countries And What Is Their Goal In World Politics?

In the world of economics, there’s a group of five emerging economies that have joined forces and formed a friendly alliance. It’s called BRICS, which stands for Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa. Initially, they were known as the BRIC economies, but they later welcomed South Africa to their ranks and became known as BRICS. This informal coalition is a way for these countries to collaborate and support each other in their development and growth. Together, they make up a powerful group that holds great potential in shaping the global economy.

The main goal of this alliance is to encourage active, practical, step-by-step, clear, and inclusive cooperation and communication among its member countries. Moreover, the emphasis is on creating a peaceful and balanced world system that supports mutual prosperity and benefits all the nations and individuals involved. The alliance aims to work together in a transparent and open manner, promoting a positive global environment for everyone. By doing so, they aspire to create a better future for the world as a whole.


Understanding BRICS

Back in 1990, the countries that eventually formed BRIC together made up only 11% of the world’s total economic output, known as the gross domestic product (GDP). But things changed rapidly, and by 2014, their combined GDP skyrocketed to almost 30%. This remarkable growth reached its peak in 2010, after a major setback caused by the global financial crisis in 2008. It was during this time that South Africa was invited to become part of BRIC, turning the acronym into BRICS. This expansion reflected the increasing significance and influence of these nations in the global economy.

The term BRIC was originally introduced by Jim O’Neill, an economist working at Goldman Sachs, back in 2001. O’Neill’s concept didn’t suggest that these countries formed a political alliance like the European Union (EU) or a formal trading association. Instead, it highlighted their collective influence as an economic group. The leaders of BRICS nations often gather at summits, showing a tendency to act in harmony with each other’s interests. According to some predictions, by the year 2050, these economies could surpass many of the current major global economic powers in terms of wealth. This potential for economic growth can be attributed to the relatively lower costs of labor and production that exist in the BRIC countries.

Many companies view the BRICS nations as appealing destinations for expanding their operations or attracting foreign investment from other countries. These nations provide favorable economies that present enticing opportunities for businesses from around the world.

Goldman Sachs created an investment fund with a specific focus on seizing opportunities in the BRIC economies. However, in 2015, due to a decrease in the expected growth of these economies, the fund was combined with a broader fund that targeted emerging markets in general. This decision was made to adapt to the changing circumstances and explore a wider range of investment possibilities.


Goals Of Brics In World Politics

  • Economic Cooperation And Development

One of the main objectives of BRICS is to strengthen economic cooperation and drive development among its member nations. They aim to challenge the dominance of established economic powers and foster a fairer and more inclusive global economic system. The BRICS countries, with their substantial populations, vast territories, and sizable GDPs, possess formidable collective economic power. By pooling their resources together, BRICS strives to establish an alternative economic model that places importance on sustainable development, eradicating poverty, and achieving shared prosperity for all.

To make their goals a reality, BRICS has set up several financial mechanisms like the New Development Bank (NDB) and the Contingent Reserve Arrangement (CRA). These institutions serve as platforms for member countries to combine their resources, invest in infrastructure projects, and offer financial assistance in times of emergencies. By boosting trade within the BRICS nations, encouraging investments, and facilitating the exchange of technology, the group aims to establish a fairer global economic system with better balance. These efforts contribute to fostering economic growth and cooperation among the member countries.

  • Geopolitical Influence And Multipolarity

The BRICS countries have a common goal of expanding their combined geopolitical influence and advocating for a more diverse and balanced global order. They believe that emerging economies should have a stronger representation and voice in international institutions like the United Nations (UN), International Monetary Fund (IMF), and World Bank. BRICS aims to reform these institutions to better align with the current global power dynamics and address the long-standing imbalances that still exist. By doing so, they aspire to create a more equitable and inclusive international system that takes into account the perspectives and interests of all nations, regardless of their size or historical background.

The BRICS group places great importance on the idea of working together with other nations and organizations through multilateralism. They value principles such as respecting each country’s sovereignty, avoiding interference in internal affairs, and finding peaceful solutions to conflicts. Through open dialogue, cooperation, and partnerships with various regions and organizations, BRICS aims to influence global norms and standards. Their guiding principles are equality, mutual respect, and pursuing shared interests. By promoting these principles, BRICS strives to create a more harmonious and inclusive world.

  • Political Dialogue And Cooperation

The BRICS members understand the importance of engaging in political dialogue and working together to tackle global challenges successfully. They regularly convene summits, ministerial meetings, and working group sessions to share their perspectives on urgent matters like climate change, terrorism, cybersecurity, public health, and sustainable development. These platforms serve as opportunities for BRICS countries to establish shared positions, coordinate policies, and foster collaboration on regional and global agendas. By coming together and exchanging ideas, the BRICS nations aim to make a positive impact and address these crucial issues in a unified and effective manner.

BRICS also wants to improve cultural exchanges and interactions among people to promote understanding, trust, and friendship. This cultural diplomacy is very important in strengthening connections between member countries and creating links between different cultures and societies. By embracing cultural diversity and encouraging people-to-people exchanges, BRICS aims to create a more connected and friendly world. These efforts help build stronger relationships and foster mutual appreciation among the member countries.

  • Reforming Global Governance

Another important aim of the BRICS group is to change the current global governance structures, which they believe are mostly controlled by Western powers. BRICS wants to give more representation and influence to emerging economies in organizations like the United Nations, the World Bank, and the International Monetary Fund. The member countries argue that it is important to have a fairer and more inclusive global governance system to effectively address the challenges and aspirations of developing nations.

  • Cultural Exchanges And People-To-People Connectivity

Alongside the economic and political aspects, the BRICS group also understands the significance of cultural interactions and connections between people. Member nations promote cultural events, academic exchanges, and tourism to encourage better understanding, celebrate different cultures, and build stronger social bonds. These initiatives aim to establish a strong base for long-lasting cooperation and friendship among BRICS countries.


Criticism And Challenges

The BRICS nations, which have a large number of people and together produce more than 16 trillion U.S. dollars in goods and services, are seen as the third most important economic power in the world. They come after the European Union and the United States. However, the BRICS group has received criticism on various issues. One main worry is that China has too much control within the group. Its economic growth is much greater than that of the other countries, which gives the impression that the partnership is focused on China rather than being an equal alliance.

Another problem comes from the fact that the BRICS members don’t have shared economic interests. The amount of trade between these countries has been decreasing, while reports show that trade between the BRICS nations and the European Union, as well as the United States, is increasing. Additionally, China trades more with the rest of the world compared to the other BRICS countries. These figures show that there is a difference in the way trade happens, and this raises doubts about how well the group is economically connected.

The BRICS group also deals with disagreements among its member countries. They have differences in culture, economy, and development, as well as varying ways of living and understanding poverty. These disparities make it difficult for them to agree on what’s important and limit their ability to work together effectively. Additionally, the idea of “emerging economies” within the BRICS group has raised questions because some countries are doing well while others are not improving much. As a response, the concept of BRICS+ has emerged, suggesting that the existing forum should expand. This new platform aims to improve the quality of life worldwide, set higher environmental standards, and promote social responsibilities.

In summary, the BRICS countries have a lot of economic power together, but they face criticism because China has too much control, they don’t have shared economic interests, they compete with each other, and there are differences among the member nations. It’s important for the BRICS group to address these challenges in order to work together better, promote fair growth, and improve the lives of people worldwide. The idea of BRICS+ suggests a desire for a larger platform where they can all come together and work towards a common goal of making various aspects of life better for everyone around the world.


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