Information Bulletin of the BRICS Trade Union Forum

Monitoring of the economic, social and labor situation in the BRICS countries
Issue 25.2024
2024.06.17 — 2024.06.23
International relations
Foreign policy in the context of BRICS
Xi, Putin Score Wins as More Asia Leaders Aim to Join BRICS
(Си Цзиньпин и Путин одерживают победу, поскольку все больше азиатских лидеров стремятся присоединиться к БРИКС) / USA, June, 2024
Keywords: brics+, expert_opinion

As Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese Premier Li Qiang wrapped up separate meetings in Southeast Asia this week, the two partners in the BRICS economic bloc encountered a region keen to join a group seen as a hedge against Western-led institutions.

During an interview with Chinese media ahead of Li’s visit to Malaysia, Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim declared his intention to apply to the bloc after it doubled in size this year by luring Global South nations — partly by offering access to financing but also by providing a political venue independent of Washington’s influence.

Thailand — a US treaty ally — last month announced its own bid to join BRICS, named after members Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa. The bloc “represents a south-south cooperative framework which Thailand has long desired to be a part of,” Foreign Minister Maris Sangiampongsa told reporters last week.

For countries seeking to mitigate the economic risks of intensifying US-China competition, joining BRICS is an attempt to straddle some of those tensions. In Southeast Asia, many nations depend economically on trade with China while also simultaneously welcoming the security presence and investment Washington provides.

But BRICS membership is also a way of signaling increasing frustration with the US-led international order and key institutions that remain firmly in the control of Western powers, like the World Bank and International Monetary Fund.

“Some of us, including people like myself, think that we need to find solutions to the unfair international financial and economic architecture,” former Malaysian Foreign Minister Saifuddin Abdullah said in an interview. “So BRICS would probably be one of the ways to balance some things.”

Ukraine Summit

For Putin and Chinese leader Xi Jinping, the interest in BRICS also shows their success at pushing back at attempts by the US and its allies to isolate them more broadly over the war in Ukraine and military threats to Taiwan, the Philippines, South Korea and Japan.

Ukraine leader Volodymyr Zelenskiy struggled to convince Asian nations to back his peace summit in Switzerland earlier this month, and Putin this week signed a defense pact with North Korea while warning he had the right to arm US adversaries around the world.

A club that for years consisted of just five members expanded with the inclusion of Iran, the United Arab Emirates, Ethiopia and Egypt this January. That was a push largely driven by China as it tries to increase its clout on the global stage.

Another Southeast Asian nation, Indonesia, was considered an early favorite to join last year before President Joko Widodo indicated he would not be rushed into the decision.

Longtime US Foes

Still, the momentum to add new members has continued. Despite US and European efforts to prevent countries from dealing with Moscow, representatives from 12 non-member nations appeared at a BRICS Dialogue in Russia this month. They included longtime US foes like Cuba and Venezuela, but also nations such as Turkey, Laos, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Kazakhstan.

Also present was Vietnam, which last year upgraded ties with Washington in a move seen as pushback on Beijing’s rising influence in the region. Hanoi has been following the grouping’s progress with “keen interest,” as state broadcaster Voice of Vietnam put it last month.

“Vietnam is always ready to participate in and contribute actively to global and regional multilateral mechanisms,” Foreign Ministry spokesperson Pham Thu Hang said at the time.

Vietnam welcomed Russia’s leader this week despite strong objections from the US on the grounds that “no country should give Putin a platform to promote his war of aggression” in Ukraine. Vietnam and Russia have ties going back to the Cold War and Soviet era.

In their joint statement issued at the conclusion of their talks, Russia welcomed Vietnam’s participation in the dialogue earlier this month and said they would “continue to strengthen ties between the BRICS countries and developing countries, including Vietnam.”

It wasn’t clear how much BRICS was part of Putin’s closed-door talks in Vietnam, though the two nations pledged to boost defense and energy cooperation. China’s Li used his trip to Malaysia deepen trade and economic ties and advance construction of major projects.

Unwieldy Group

After this year’s expansion, BRICS plans to invite non-member countries to take part in its next summit in the Russian city of Kazan in October. Just hosting the event gives Moscow a chance to showcase to the world that it isn’t totally isolated by Western opposition to the war in Ukraine.

“It’s no secret that Washington doesn’t love the BRICS, particularly with Iran and Russia’s membership,” said Scot Marciel, a former US ambassador to Indonesia, Myanmar and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations.

At the same time, the larger the bloc grows, the less likely it is to find consensus on key issues, he said. “My sense is, Washington is probably not applauding the move by Thailand and Malaysia to join it, but I don’t think it’s going to cause massive heartburn.”

A State Department official said the US is aware of the interest in BRICS by Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam, adding that multilateral blocs should further United Nations Charter principles such as respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity.

The potential benefits for joining BRICS go beyond geopolitics.

The bloc’s members have agreed to pool $100 billion of foreign-currency reserves, which they can lend to each other during emergencies. The group also founded the New Development Bank — a World Bank-modeled institution that has approved almost $33 billion of loans mainly for water, transport and other infrastructure projects since it began operations in 2015.

That investment pool would be useful in Southeast Asia, where official development finance dwindled to a low of $26 billion in 2022, according to a report this month by the Sydney-based Lowy Institute.
Another draw to membership, Malaysia’s Saifuddin said, is the residual negative sentiment toward institutions like the IMF, which pushed austerity measures sometimes blamed in the region for worsening the economic hardship caused by the Asian financial crisis in the late 1990s.

Washington isn’t sitting still. It has deepened security links in the region on matters like counter-terrorism, and with countries like Vietnam and the Philippines who are increasingly worried about their disputes with Beijing in the South China Sea. But as the great power competition intensifies across the board, there is also a recognition the region needs to hedge its bets.

“There is increasingly less space for smaller countries to maneuver,” Ong Keng Yong, the former secretary general of Asean said in an interview. “By joining organizations like BRICS, countries are signaling that they want to be friendly to all sides, not just to the US and its allies.”
— With assistance from Thomas Kutty Abraham

Malaysia wants to join BRICS, China’s Xi an ‘outstanding leader’: Anwar
(Малайзия хочет присоединиться к БРИКС, Си Цзиньпин – «выдающийся лидер»: Анвар) / Qatar, June, 2024
Keywords: brics+

Malaysia wants to join the BRICS grouping of emerging economies, the Southeast Asian country’s leader has said.

In an interview with Chinese media outlet Guancha, Malaysian Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim said his government would soon begin the process of joining the bloc, once it had received feedback from South Africa – the current BRICS chair – to its expression of interest.

“We have made our policy clear and we have made our decision. We will start the formal process soon. As far as the Global South is concerned, we are fully supportive,” Anwar said, according to the Shanghai-based outlet.

Anwar also backed comments by Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva criticising the dominance of the US dollar in international trade.

“Last year Malaysia had the highest investment ever, but the currency was still attacked. Well, it has eased in the past few weeks. But it doesn’t make sense, it goes against basic economic principles,” Anwar was quoted as saying.

“Why? A currency that is completely outside the trade system of the two countries and is irrelevant in terms of economic activities in the country, has become dominant, purely because it is used as an international currency.”

Founded in 2006, the grouping was originally known as BRIC, and comprised Brazil, Russia, India and China. South Africa joined in 2010, and the grouping came to be known as BRICS.

In January 2024, the bloc expanded its membership to include Egypt, Ethiopia, Iran, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

In his interview, Anwar said China’s rise had “brought us a glimmer of hope that there are checks and balances in the world” and praised Chinese President Xi Jinping for recognising the importance of rejuvenating Asian values.

“When I first met President Xi Jinping, I was attracted to him because President Xi is one of the few outstanding leaders who talks about civilisation. In a sense, he is unique,” he was quoted as saying.

“People keep talking about October 7, which annoys me. Do you want to erase 70 years of history by harping on one event? This is the Western narrative. You see, this is the problem with the West. They want to control the discourse, but we can no longer accept it because they are no longer a colonial power and independent countries should be free to express themselves,” Anwar said, according to Guancha.

Anwar made his comments before a visit by Chinese Premier Li Qiang to mark the 50th anniversary of diplomatic ties between China and Malaysia.

During Li’s three-day visit kicking off on Tuesday, Kuala Lumpur and Beijing are expected to renew a five-year economic cooperation agreement and sign deals to collaborate in areas including the digital economy and green development.

China has been Malaysia’s largest trading partner since 2009, with total trade last year reaching 450.84 billion ringgit ($98.90bn).

How BRICS Became So Much More Than Just a Slogan (Как БРИКС стал больше, чем просто лозунгом) / USA, June, 2024
Keywords: expert_opinion, political_issues

The BRICS group of emerging-market nations — the acronym stands for Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa — has gone from a slogan dreamed up at an investment bank two decades ago to a real-world club that controls a multilateral lender. It doubled in size in 2024, pairing several major energy producers with some of the biggest consumers among developing countries and potentially enhancing the group’s economic clout in a US-dominated world.

1. Who are the new members of BRICS?
The BRICS group expanded on Jan. 1 to include Iran, the United Arab Emirates, Ethiopia and Egypt. Saudi Arabia was also announced as a new member, though the kingdom later said it was still studying the invitation. Argentina was invited too, but President Javier Milei, who took office on Dec. 10, decided against joining. He had indicated during his campaign that he would steer his country’s foreign policy away from China and Brazil, saying, “Our geopolitical alignment is with the United States and Israel. We are not going to ally with communists.” A further expansion is on the cards after Malaysia and Thailand announced plans to join.

2. What is the impetus for expansion?
The push has been driven largely by China, now the world’s pre-eminent industrial power, which is trying to boost its global clout by courting nations traditionally allied with the US. South Africa and Russia have backed the expansion. India was initially hesitant because it was concerned that a bigger BRICS would transform the group into a mouthpiece for China, while Brazil was worried about alienating the West — although both governments eventually agreed to an enlargement. For new members, BRICS offers the potential for easier access to financing from its wealthier members, and a political venue independent of Washington’s influence. The bloc “represents a south-south cooperative framework which Thailand has long desired to be a part of,” said Thai Foreign Minister Maris Sangiampongsa.

3. What does a larger BRICS mean for the world?
Adding major fossil-fuel producers may give the bloc more scope to challenge the dollar’s dominance in oil and gas trading by switching to other currencies, a concept referred to as dedollarization. However, expansion is “more about politics and less about economics,” according to analysts at Bloomberg Economics. The enlarged alliance may become a stronger counterweight to the so-called Group of Seven — the US, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the UK. Beijing is trying to build an alternative world order by pulling southern hemisphere nations into its economic orbit in a challenge to US hegemony. Russian President Vladimir Putin, isolated by the US and its allies over his war in Ukraine, is also keen to see Washington’s global influence recede. Other groupings that are already promoting a move toward a more “multipolar” world — and away from the post-Cold War dominance of the US — include OPEC, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, the Southern Common Market (Mercosur), and the African Union.

4. What does BRICS do?
The biggest achievements of the group have been financial. The countries agreed to pool $100 billion of foreign-currency reserves, which they can lend to each other during emergencies. That liquidity facility became operational in 2016. They founded the New Development Bank — a World Bank-inspired institution that has approved almost $33 billion of loans — mainly for water, transport and other infrastructure projects — since it began operations in 2015. (South Africa borrowed $1 billion in 2020 to fight the Covid-19 pandemic.) By comparison, the World Bank committed $72.8 billion to partner countries in fiscal 2023.

5. How have trade relations changed?
Trade among the bloc’s first five members surged 56% to $422 billion between 2017 and 2022. Economically, the natural resources and farm products of Brazil and Russia make them natural partners for Chinese demand. India and China have weaker trade connections with each other, partly due to their geopolitical rivalry and an acrimonious border dispute.

6. How did BRICS get started?
“BRIC” was coined in 2001 by economist Jim O’Neill, then at Goldman Sachs Group Inc., to draw attention to strong economic growth rates in Brazil, Russia, India and China. The term was intended as an optimistic scenario for investors amid market pessimism following the terrorist attacks in the US on Sept. 11 that year. The four nations took the concept and ran with it. Their rapid growth at the time meant they had shared interests and challenges, and combining their voices could increase their influence. The first meeting of BRIC foreign ministers was organized by Russia on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in 2006. The group held its first leaders’ summit in 2009. South Africa was invited to join in 2010, adding another continent and the letter “S.”

7. Who’s in charge?
For most of the time BRICS has existed, China’s gross domestic product has been more than twice the size of the four existing members combined. In theory, that should give it the most sway. In practice, India, which recently surpassed China in population, has been a counterweight. BRICS hasn’t formally endorsed China’s big push to build infrastructure abroad, called the Belt and Road Initiative. That’s partly because India objects to such projects in disputed territory held by Pakistan, its neighbor and archrival. The New Development Bank has no dominant shareholder: Beijing agreed to the equal holdings for each member advocated by New Delhi. The bank is headquartered in Shanghai, but has been led by an Indian and two Brazilians, most recently former President Dilma Rousseff.

8. Has Russia’s invasion of Ukraine affected the group?
The other BRICS countries have adopted a broadly neutral stance toward the war, viewing it as more of a regional issue than a global crisis. However, the war changed Russia’s relations with BRICS institutions. The New Development Bank quickly froze Russian projects, and Moscow hasn’t been able to access dollars via the BRICS shared foreign-currency system. Essentially, with US sanctions piling up, other BRICS countries prioritized ongoing access to the dollar-based financial system over helping Russia.

9. Are investors still interested in BRICS?
There’s still intense interest in emerging markets. But BRICS is largely irrelevant as an investment theme today due to geopolitical changes and the members’ different economic trajectories. US-led sanctions have put Russia off limits for most foreign investors, and some sectors in China — especially technology companies — have also been sanctioned or face potential investment bans. China also is a maturing economy, increasingly separated from other emerging markets and facing a structural slowdown. Brazil’s economy slowed markedly following the end of a global commodity boom about a decade ago. South Africa’s has been subjected to years of rolling power blackouts, because the state utility can’t produce enough electricity to meet demand, as well as logistics snarls. India is still a growth story that investment banks compare with China 10 or 15 years ago, though it’s unclear if it can follow China’s manufacturing-led model.

The Reference Shelf

  • Bloomberg’s Balance of Power newsletter explains how BRICS helps Xi and Putin to challenge the West.
  • BRICS is just one piece of the effort to raise China’s global clout to “a new level.”
  • A BRICS common currency is a pipe dream, says Bloomberg Opinion’s Daniel Moss.
  • A report on China’s use of “parallel structures” like BRICS to challenge the established international order, by the Mercator Institute for China Studies.
  • The New Development Bank’s FAQ page.
The West led the old world order. Now, it should join the emerging one
(Запад возглавлял старый мировой порядок. Теперь он должен присоединиться к формирующемуся) / UAE, June, 2024
Keywords: expert_opinion, global_governance

The latest to announce their intention to join was Malaysian Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim. “We have made our policy clear and we have made our decision. We will start the formal procedures soon. As far as the Global South is concerned, we are fully supportive,” he said in an interview on Sunday. About 40 countries want to follow suit, according to officials in Russia, the current Brics chair.
Robert O’Brien, who served as former US president Donald Trump’s national security adviser, has just published an essay in which he recommends that the US decouple from China and consider sending the entire Marine Corps to the Asia-Pacific. But Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and his New Zealand counterpart, Christopher Luxon, appear not to have read it – going by the friendly smiles they displayed during Chinese Premier Li Qiang’s visits to their countries in the past few days.

New agreements on trade and the environment were signed in New Zealand, while Mr Li said relations with Australia were “back on track” and Mr Albanese hailed “constructive” talks and a “revitalised” bilateral engagement.

Contrast this with the recent G7 summit in Italy, where all the leaders – bar one – of what are supposed to be the developed world’s most important countries are facing mammoth challenges domestically.

The host, Giorgia Meloni, was the only western leader present riding high, after her party topped Italy’s polls in the European Parliament elections this month. Ms Meloni’s Brothers of Italy are variously described as “far right”, or more politely, “arch-conservative”. Are theirs the values that the West now regards as universal and wishes to export to the rest of the world?

This was presumably not what US President Joe Biden had in mind when he convened his “Summits for Democracy”. But we haven’t heard much about them recently, which is unsurprising considering how US support for Israel in Gaza has polarised world opinion and the chorus of those declaring an end to American exceptionalism continues to swell.

From now on, whoever wins the next US presidential election, wrote one Bloomberg contributor this week, America will “behave as just another Great Power using its awe-inspiring might to serve a narrow self-interest”.

This is a highly significant change in itself. Still more remarkable was an essay published on Tuesday by the highly respected Scottish-American historian Niall Ferguson. Mr Ferguson has been describing the relationship between America and China as “Cold War II” since 2018. Naturally, he wants the US to triumph, just as it did over the Soviet Union in 1989.

“But it only recently struck me that in this new Cold War, we – and not the Chinese – might be the Soviets,” he wrote.

He singles out what he sees as an excessive budget deficit, too much government intervention in the economy, “a military that is simultaneously expensive and unequal to the tasks it confronts”, “gerontocratic leadership”, which he says was one of the “hallmarks of late Soviet leadership”, “total public cynicism about nearly all institutions”, mass deaths from addiction and a healthcare system that has become bloated and dysfunctional “even as the political and cultural elite double down on a bizarre ideology that no one really believes in”, and “a population that no longer regards patriotism, religion, having children, or community involvement as important”.

“Are we the Soviets?” he concludes. “Look around you.”

Is this the way US hegemony ends, to paraphrase TS Eliot, not with a bang, but a long drawn-out whimper? It’s interesting to note that Mr Ferguson, a conservative, uses the term “degenerate” to diagnose America’s condition, a word just as likely to spring from the lips of former Russian president Dmitry Medvedev as an accusation against the West in general.

I’m not going to make any moral judgement. But if Mr Ferguson and his allies don’t want the US – or the West more broadly – to lose “Cold War II”, they should reflect that there’s still time to chart a new course.

They could reject that very framing, and instead of railing at their loss of influence they could work with Brics and the Global South. Just because the old order they dominated is palpably fading, as recent events show, that doesn’t mean they can’t be part of the new emerging one.

The world lost a chance to unite after the disintegration of the Eastern Bloc. As the tectonic plates shift once more, let’s try not to lose another.
Investment and Finance
Investment and finance in BRICS
Malaysia gears up for BRICS membership (Малайзия готовится к членству в БРИКС) / Russia, June, 2024
Keywords: brics+, Malaysia, expert_opinion

After the recent declarations made by Thailand about its intention to join BRICS, a similar move was unveiled recently by Malaysia, another key ASEAN economy. According to the statements of Malaysia’s Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim, “we have made a decision, we will be placing the formal procedures soon… we are just waiting for the final results from the government in South Africa”[1]. These statements come ahead of the visit by Chinese Premier Li Qiang that is to mark the 50th anniversary of Malaysia-China diplomatic relations. With Malaysia voicing its intention to join BRICS, it appears that the majority of ASEAN economies have either expressed their plans to become BRICS members or have participated in the BRICS+ meetings ever since the expanded format was launched in 2017. If the string of BRICS applications from ASEAN members continues to grow, it could be the case that after last year’s wave of BRICS expansion that was mainly concentrated in the MENA/Middle East region, the next expansion wave could be dominated by new entrants from Southeast Asia.

Malaysia is one of the regional leaders in terms of the level of development and well-being – in 2022 it was 4th in ASEAN in terms of its overall GDP (while it slipped in ranking later, it is still broadly on par with Vietnam and the Philippines that are in the 4-5 positions), while being 3rd in the regional bloc in terms of GDP per capita after Singapore and Brunei. The economy was in acceleration mode in the first quarter of 2024, growing by 4.2% after 2.9% in Q4 2023 and above the market consensus of 3.9%. According to the authorities, one of the key drivers of growth acceleration was export performance, with the government being “optimistic that Malaysia’s gross domestic product (GDP) is well placed to expand within the official forecast range of 4% to 5%”[2].

Malaysia’s trade relations are well diversified with active development of ties with the US and China. According to Malaysia’s authorities, in 2023, China continued to be Malaysia’s largest trading partner for 15 consecutive years since 2009, accounting for 17.1% of Malaysia’s total trade. In 2022 trade with China reached its all-time high, with the contraction in 2023 partly reversed in Q1 2024 with an increase of 3% YoY[3]. Malaysia is making use of its export potential via a highly diverse network of trade alliances – the country signed and implemented 16 FTAs (7 bilateral FTAs and 9 regional FTAs). Importantly, in 2022, Malaysia implemented two mega-FTAs namely Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) and the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP). [4] Further geographical diversification of Malaysia’s trade would greatly benefit from the development of ties with BRICS+ economies, including in such regional blocs (whose members are not covered by the Malaysia’s FTA network) as MERCOSUR and the African Continental FTA (AfCFTA).

If both Thailand and Malaysia do join the BRICS core or the soon to be created “partnership belt” then the largest regional economy in ASEAN – Indonesia – may also opt to strengthen its ties with the BRICS bloc. The same “domino effect” may play out with respect to another key regional economy such as Vietnam that along with Indonesia has participated in the BRICS+ meetings in recent years. Such a cumulative build-up in the cooperation between BRICS and ASEAN members could result in the next wave of BRICS expansion (if it happens) being concentrated to a significant degree in the region of Southeast Asia.

Another implication of the closer link-up with ASEAN for BRICS could be an important regional role played by the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) that brings together China with ASEAN economies as well as developed economies such as Japan, South Korea and Australia. In fact, apart from serving as one of the key components in the possible horizontal platform of regional integration blocs within the BRICS+ circle, RCEP could also serve as platform for outreach to those advanced economies that are focused on developing constructive economic ties with the Global South within an expanded BRICS++ format. We note in this respect the constructive development of China-Australia trade relations in recent periods, with bilateral trade reaching an all-time high in 2023[5].

In order for the closer partnership between BRICS and ASEAN to evolve the former needs to focus its development agenda on creating new venues for BRICS+ economic cooperation. This was the main message of Vietnam’s representatives in the expanded BRICS+ meetings held earlier this year[6], with trade liberalization being singled out as one of the main gateways for the future cooperation among developing economies. For ASEAN it seems combining trade liberalization with the advancement of cooperation in the sphere of digital economy and e-commerce may be of particular interest, which is why BRICS may need a roadmap of how alliances such as DEAs (digital economic agreements – actively led by ASEAN and Singapore in particular) may be developed within the BRICS+ platform.

Image by Pexels via Pixabay
Yaroslav Lissovolik, Founder, BRICS+ Analytics

World of Work
Fawzia Peer heads key BRICS Women in Business position (Фавзия Пир возглавляет ключевую должность «Женщины в бизнесе» стран БРИКС) / South Africa, June, 2024
Keywords: BRICS_Women_in_Business
South Africa

Veteran Durban politician Fawzia Peer has been selected as South Africa's head of capacity building for the BRICS Women's Business Alliance.

Breaking the news to IOL, Peer said the timing could not be better. "It's an opportune moment for South African women. As part of the Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa pact, known as BRICS, we have a lot to offer our partners, given our history, our path to freedom, our economic resilience and now our revival of Madiba's legacy," she said.

The BRICS Women In Business Alliance is a key arm of BRICS aimed at driving collaborations and nation-to- nation initiatives for women. And, for Peer, she hopes to shake up the notion of women in business being the corporate boardroom.

"As South Africans, we know only too well that issues of economic freedom and food security affects women more than men. So when we speak of women in business, this must include our agricultural sector, women who farm for survival and those who farm for business. We need to upskill them and create opportunities beyond our borders, which include entry to markets. I'm hoping my BRICS position will allow us to do that through bringing on board our provincial leadership too," added Peer, who previously served as Durban's deputy mayor. She is currently a member of the ANC's National Executive Committee.

Among the key objectives of the Women's Business Alliance is to promote collaboration of BRICS countries for women through the sharing of knowledge and opportunities for women.

Peer is keen to bring in women across the political spheres in South Africa to ensure representation and success of the South African arm.

"This is not about politics. This is about empowering women. And as women, we know how to leave politics out of it when it comes to matters of sustainability because it involves economic upliftment and we come together to do that. So I will be reaching out to the many women who make up our fabric of South African society to ensure we rise to this BRICS opportunity," said Peer.

South Africa has been a member of BRICS since 2010. The pact brings together key developing countries aimed at countering the power and economic monopoly of wealthy nations of the west. This is done through improving the market competitiveness of BRICS countries and enabling greater investment and trade agreements among those countries.

Comprehensive reports, BRICS research materials
Special Edition of "International Affairs" Magazine Devoted to Russia's BRICS Chairship (Спецвыпуск журнала "Международная жизнь", посвященный председательству России в БРИКС) / Russia, June, 2024
Keywords: media

The edition includes address to the readers by Sergey Lavrov, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation, an interview with Sergey Ryabkov, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation, Russia's Sherpa in BRICS, articles by Gleb Nikitin, Governor of the Nizhny Novgorod Region, deputy ministers and heads of relevant departments of the Russian Line Agencies, representatives of academic, civil society and business circles.

In this special edition one can find priorities and initiatives on a wide range of issues of BRICS Strategic Partnership.
The edition has been presented during the BRICS Ministers of Foreign Affairs/International Relations meeting (Nizhny Novgorod, 10-11 June 2024).

The Roscongress Foundation manages the events of Russia’s BRICS Chairship.

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