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BRICS Expansion, New Members!

If accepted, the new proposed BRICS members would create an entity with a GDP 30% larger than the United States, over 50% of the global population and in control of 60% of global gas reserves.  

By Chris Devonshire-Ellis 

Over a dozen nations have formally requested to join the BRICS grouping, according to Sergey Lavrov, the foreign minister of Russia, after the club decided earlier this year to admit new members. Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa make up the BRICS today.

It is not a free trade bloc, but its members do collaborate on trade issues and have set up the New Development Bank (NDB) as a policy bank to manage infrastructure financing. That was established in 2014 to offer an alternative to the IMF and World Bank loan procedures, which the members felt had grown overly US-centric. China established the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) around the same time for essentially the same goals and to provide an alternative source of funding to that offered by the IMF and World Banks, which were perceived to impose political reform policies intended to aid the United States in exchange for loaning money. 

The NDB and AIIB banks both have a Triple A credit rating and US$100 billion in capital. Each of the five members owns an equal number of shares in the NDB bank. As it is, the BRICS region is responsible for over 40% of the world’s population and about a quarter of its GDP. By 2030, the GDP share should have doubled to account for 50% of the global GDP. Expanding BRICS will hasten that procedure right away.

Lavrov claimed that Algeria, Argentina, and Iran have all submitted applications for BRICS membership; however, it is well known that Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Egypt, and Afghanistan are also interested, in addition to Indonesia, which is anticipated to submit a formal application for membership during the upcoming G20 conference in Bali.

Kazakhstan, Nicaragua, Nigeria, Senegal, Thailand, and the United Arab Emirates are other candidates for membership. At the May BRICS Expansion discussion meeting, each country sent a representative from its finance ministry.

The following are some fundamental economic statistics for the potential prospective BRICS members. The GDP estimates provided are nominal, and the growth rates for 2022 are based on data from the different Central Banks for the first nine months of the year.

Old Members

Brazil

Russia

India

China

Russia

New Members

Saudi Arabia

Egypt

UAE

Argentina

Iran

Ethiopia


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