BRICS, an acronym for Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa, is an alliance of five emerging national economies from different parts of the world. The organization is known for its rapidly increasing economies, large populations, and growing global influence. Founded in 2001 by the finance ministers of Brazil, Russia, India, and China, the alliance was initially known as “BRICS” without South Africa. The finance ministers recognized their countries’ economic potential and began having yearly meetings. South Africa joined the organization in 2010, and the acronym became BRICS.

Collectively, the BRICS nations account for 42% of the world’s population, contribute 24% to the global GDP, and hold a substantial 16% share in world trade. The alliance seeks to strengthen collaboration and promote economic development among its member countries. It acts as a forum for discussion, collaboration, and coordination on various subjects, including trade, investment, finance, technology, and sustainable development.

Annual summits of member countries are held, and ministerial-level discussions take place in many fields. South Africa, as the current President of BRICS, is all set to host an important gathering this week, with the growth of the organization as the main agenda item. The BRICS Sherpa conference, scheduled for July 4th to 6th in Durban, will focus on drafting the expansion paper for Foreign Ministers and Leaders to examine.

During the summit, member countries work together to develop principles, processes, and criteria for BRICS growth. Nineteen nations have approached BRICS leaders to express their interest in becoming full members of the BRICS forum, with 13 official requests and approximately five or six informal inquiries. Minister Naledi Pandor, South Africa’s Foreign Minister, stated that a number of nations, including Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt, Algeria, Argentina, Mexico, and Nigeria, have shown a strong desire to join the BRICS.

Minister Pandor emphasized the extensive worldwide interest in joining the grouping, emphasizing that the decision on new members would be made only when the necessary criteria have been developed. Several African nations, Iran, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates attended the recent BRICS Foreign Ministers conference in Cape Town. This summit emphasized BRICS’s desire and capacity to expand its reach and impact. For some time now, the organization has been discussing the need for growth. Members of the BRICS countries called for expansion during the 2022 China BRICS meeting.

BRICS is an organization that has become an influential force in the global economy. With plans to expand its reach and impact, the alliance has attracted interest from several countries worldwide. As BRICS continues to develop its principles and processes for growth, it is likely that the alliance will become even more influential in the years to come.

Why are Countries so keen to join BRICS?

BRICS is a group of emerging markets and developing nations that is committed to promoting multilateralism, improving the global governance system, and boosting the representation and voice of developing countries in international affairs. The bloc has evolved into a positive, stable, and constructive power that prioritizes aiding nations in developing their investment and trade without imposing any constraints. BRICS advocates for multipolarity and multilateralism, and according to Valeriia Gorbacheva, head of the Multilateral Strategic Project Office at Russia’s National Research University’s Higher School of Economics, the principal goal of BRICS countries is to fight for the interests of developing countries. Gorbacheva believes that the BRICS nations’ aims and ideals are congruent with those of the majority of countries throughout the world, suggesting that BRICS growth is simply a matter of time. Some reports suggest that many countries are tired of the United States’ virtual dominance of the global economy for decades, which has forced dollar transactions and rules like failure to follow Washington’s orders will result in penalties as well as economic and financial pressure. In contrast, BRICS aims to provide support to developing countries in their investment and trade, without imposing any constraints, while prioritizing multipolarity and multilateralism.

IRAN: Iran is currently dealing with economic sanctions and views BRICS membership as an opportunity to attract investments and rebuild its economy. Becoming a member of BRICS also allows Iran to join a non-western body, which is seen as a geopolitical maneuver to restore the JCPOA. Iran has good relationships with all BRICS members and is expected to be a trustworthy partner due to its unique geographical location, efficient transportation and transit networks, and energy reserves. After joining the SCO in 2021, Iran’s BRICS membership could be its next major move towards the east.

UAE: The BRICS organization is a representation of economic cooperation that enables renewed engagement with its member nations. This collaboration identifies China and India as potential South Asian market destinations, while also considering assertive Russia as an alternative to Western dominance in the region. Furthermore, BRICS aims to leverage Emirati wealth to improve the New Development Bank’s credit rating and overall reputation. It is worth noting that in 2021, the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority- a state-owned entity- will be the fourth-largest sovereign wealth fund globally. BRICS recognizes that the UAE’s emphasis on and support for an innovative entrepreneurial culture is favourable to the New Development Bank’s objective of establishing projects more efficiently than other multilateral development banks.

EGYPT: Egypt is a country that possesses abundant natural and human resources and aims to achieve economic progress through international investment. Joining the BRICS would be a crucial step towards this goal. However, the country has been facing economic challenges such as the devaluation of the Egyptian pound and a decline in investment and tourism since the revolution. To address these issues, Cairo is considering BRICS membership as a means of ensuring economic stability, despite the fact that its current level of trade with BRICS nations is inadequate. Although Egypt has established bilateral ties with BRICS nations, its exports to the bloc account for only 0.12%, while its agricultural imports are also limited.

Several countries, such as Saudi Arabia, China, and the United Arab Emirates, have expressed interest in investing in Egypt’s energy sector. However, due to the economic crisis caused by COVID-19 and the Russia-Ukraine conflict, Egypt’s foreign reserves have decreased by 19%. To restore economic stability, Cairo is looking to the Contingent Reserve Arrangement (CRA) of the New Development Bank (NDB). The CRA is designed to assist countries that are facing short-term balance-of-payments difficulties.

TURKEY: NATO member Turkey, sees BRICS participation as an opportunity to expand its international network in non-Western regions. The European Union (EU) has stated that Turkey is moving away from the EU, while granting candidate status to Ukraine, Moldova, and Georgia in 2022. The global economic crisis has reminded Turkey of the importance of alternative regional frameworks. As Turkey reorients its foreign policy and establishes its influence in the area, BRICS membership is a logical evolution that could help Turkey gain more influence in global affairs.

India’s Stance on the expansion

India has expressed its support for China’s initiative to expand BRICS membership, stating that it sees the opportunity as a chance to improve the group’s representation and diversity. S Jaishankar, India’s External Affairs Minister, emphasized the importance of holding broad discussions with all stakeholders on the expansion. India believes that a larger participation of developing economies in BRICS would not only enhance their collective voice but also provide a variety of perspectives to address global concerns. India’s stance on BRICS expansion is consistent with its commitment to multipolarity and its appreciation for diverse approaches to international challenges.


The desire of various countries to join the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa) alliance can be attributed to several reasons. Firstly, BRICS provides a platform for emerging markets and developing countries to collaborate and have a more significant voice in global affairs. By joining BRICS, countries aim to counteract the United States’ dominance in the global economy and the limitations imposed by the present global governance framework.

BRICS advocates for a more multipolar and multilateral world order that provides an alternative to the Western-dominated international system. The alliance focuses on assisting nations in developing their investment and trade without imposing limits or penalties, creating a more inclusive and fair approach to economic growth. For countries like Iran, participation in BRICS represents an opportunity to attract investments, rebuild their economy, and become a part of a non-Western organization. Given its unique geographical location and energy assets, Iran may be a good partner for the BRICS countries. Similarly, the UAE and Saudi Arabia see BRICS participation as a chance to connect with developing markets, diversify economic alliances, and improve their international standing. Egypt sees BRICS participation as an opportunity to further use its natural and human resources for economic prosperity and stability. By joining BRICS, Egypt can access international investment and financial assistance, particularly through the New Development Bank’s Contingent Reserve Arrangement, which can help countries facing economic issues. As a NATO member, Turkey sees BRICS involvement as a chance to broaden its international network beyond Western borders. With the EU distancing itself from Turkey and other countries granted candidate status, Turkey seeks to establish its influence in global affairs by joining BRICS and associating with developing powers.

The interest of countries in becoming a part of BRICS indicates their desire to form new economic alliances, increase their global influence, and challenge the existing economic and political system. The growth of BRICS indicates the organization’s rising importance and its capacity to affect the future of international relations and economic cooperation.

In conclusion, the reasons behind countries’ desire to join BRICS are diverse and multifaceted. By joining this alliance, nations can collaborate with other developing countries and have a more significant say in global affairs. BRICS also provides an alternative to the current Western-dominated international system and advocates for a more inclusive and fair approach to economic growth. As the organization grows in importance, its capacity to affect the future of international relations and economic cooperation is likely to increase.

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