Brazil, Russia, India and China had informally banded together in 2009, to challenge the world domination of the U.S. and its Western allies, calling their alliance BRIC. Currently, the bloc is holding its 15th annual summit (August 22-24, 2023) in Johannesburg, South Africa as the country became the 5th member in 2010; and its addition has modified the acronym to BRICS.
South Africa is the first beneficiary of the bloc’s expansion program. Although the smallest in terms of economic leverage and population size, it now belongs to a group that together represents a quarter of the global economy, whilst accounting for 40% of the world population. Aside from its geopolitical goals, the BRICS group is also focused on fostering economic cooperation and in propagating multilateral trade and development between BRICS member countries. Aside from BRICS, all five countries are also identified as members of the Group of 20 (G20) bloc.
Origin of BRIC
Actually, the acronym BRIC came up in 2001 after a Goldman Sachs research identified the founding four countries as the emerging economies at that time, because of their growth potential. The creation of the BRIC coalition back then was actually initiated by Russia.
Up to this date though the group is still not recognized as a formally established multilateral organisation. At present, more than 40 countries have expressed interest in joining the platform. The most prominent of which includes Iran, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Bolivia, Argentina, Cuba, Egypt, Algeria, Indonesia and Ethiopia. The leaders and governments of these countries have expressed the same dissatisfaction with the world order and concurrence with the BRICS primary goal of reducing dependence on the US dollar.