In 2001, Goldman Sachs economist Jim O’Neill predicted that the BRICs would increasingly boost the world economy. Having created an unforgettable acronym, he guaranteed that many of us would pay attention to Brazil, Russia, India, and China.
What the BRICS Want
The BRICs became the BRICS in 2010 when South Africa joined the group. During this year’s summit in Johannesburg (August 22-August 24), the group hopes to tilt global power in their direction.
To show their progress, the IMF uses numbers that adjust for the disparate costs of living. As a result, a GDP G7 nominal total of $46.07 trillion is far more than the BRICS’ $27.7 trillion. However, the adjusted PPP (Purchasing Power Parity) numbers place the BRICS in the lead:
Now, hoping further to fuel their ascent, the BRICS want to diminish the U.S. financial influence that you can see through the dominance of the dollar:
Responding with their own financial institution, the BRICS established the New Development Bank. Having already done renminbi loans, the goal is to do business in local currencies. That would mean rands in South Africa and rupees in India.
Our Bottom Line: Trading Blocs
Through its list of large trading blocs, the World Economic Forum lets us see the bigger picture.
To the largest three blocs (below) we can add Africa’s AfCFTA, the TransPacific Partnership/CPTPP and South America’s Mercosur:
Recognizing the size and scope of the world’s trading blocs, some of the BRICS say they could increase their own power by saying yes to some of the (more than) 40 nations that want to join them.
My sources and more: Excellent for a world current events overview, GZERO and then opinion columns from Eurasia Group’s Ian Bremmer are among my regular go-to sites. I also get a Statista email that had more BRICS info as did the Visual Capitalist. In addition, I suggest looking at FT and the WEF, and as a final step, this econlife post connects it all to globalization.
Our featured image of the BRICS is from GZERO.