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Economic development: what is BRICS?



BRICS is the acronym for Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa. This is the group of countries that cooperate with each other to stimulate the development of their emerging economies. Economic and social indicators such as the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and the Human Development Index (HDI) point to a similar evolution among the partner countries. For example, the sum of the GDP of the 5 nations in 2003 was equivalent to 9% of the world GDP. In 2009, the percentage went to 14% and, in the following year, it increased to 18%. The beginning of this constant growth was observed by economist Jim O’Neill, in 2001, in the study “Building Better Global Economic BRICs”.


It was he who invented the acronym BRIC to refer to expanding macroeconomies as opportunities for investors. Understand below how Jim O'Neill's notes influenced the creation of one of the largest international cooperation mechanisms and how South Africa became part of the partnership between Brazil, Russia, India and China.


When did the BRICS emerge?


It all started with O'Neill's observations. They were so pertinent to the political, economic and financial world that other scholars began to study what BRIC is.


The research sought to understand the causes and consequences of the rapid development of emerging countries that were considered underdeveloped in the past. The extensive reserves of natural resources, such as water, oil and natural gas, in addition to the population increase in recent decades, are also similar characteristics highlighted by specialists.


If we add the number of inhabitants of the 5 countries today, we are accounting for about 41% of the world's population!


In 2006, this rapprochement between Brazil, Russia, India and China ceased to be just objects of study. The foreign ministers of the four countries met in New York, USA, to talk about their mutual interest in economic cooperation.



  • Stay in the know: Government announces measures to stimulate credit, including Real Digital The meetings become annual and, in the third summit of the group, in 2011, South Africa became the new member. The entry of the African country was controversial, as its indicators were far from the economic growth of other countries. However, South Africa is also considered one of the most mature economies on its continent, not to mention that its geopolitical influence is strong and constant.


What does the BRICS stand for?


The BRICS summits aim to align the expectations of social and economic development of the member countries. The political will of its rulers is what supports the agreements that facilitate trade and investment in the activities of public and private bodies of the 5 nations. It is important to emphasize that: BRICS is not an economic bloc. There is no common policy among the group's members, a headquarters and/or a representative secretariat like the European Union and Mercosur.


Qual é a função da BRICS?

The role of the BRICS is to create initiatives that formalize the interest in mutual cooperation. The mechanisms created since 2009 have already strengthened ties in more than 30 sectors between Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa. The main fronts that promote the development of the group are:


Foundation of the BRICS Bank


Also called the New Development Bank (NBD), the BRICS Bank has managed financial reserves since 2014. The institution finances cooperation projects and its resources also work as a possible economic aid in case a BRICS member needs it. The former president of Brazil, Dilma Rousseff, will head the NBD in 2023. The decision was justified in a statement that highlighted the expansion of social programs made by Rousseff during her presidential term.


Technical and academic exchange


Dialogue between member countries also aims to strengthen the production of science, technology, culture and international security mechanisms. Studies on tuberculosis, public health and transactional crimes are examples of existing cooperativism initiatives.


Economic work groups


The BRICS Business Council (CEBRICS) works on nine fronts, such as energy, agriculture and infrastructure, to boost the BRICS economy.


Why is Brazil part of the BRICS?


The economy, territory, population of Brazil and the financial market correspond to the framework of development and influence in world geopolitics that the other BRICS countries demonstrate. In the first decade of the 2000s, the Brazilian economy was growing strongly. Factors such as a drop in inflation and political and economic stability stimulated large investments in the country, further strengthening the economy and expanding social programs. Given this scenario, Brazil was in a position to help and receive help from other countries that were experiencing a similar development scenario. The economic crises experienced in 2015, with political instability and the drop in commodity prices in the foreign market, and in 2020, with the COVID-19 pandemic, the South American country began to face more difficulties in its finances. There was an average decline of 0.6% per year in GDP per capita between 2011 and 2020. The resumption of better rates is expected for the year 2029, according to the Getúlio Vargas Foundation. Therefore, the importance of creating and strengthening international cooperation agreements such as the BRICS is fundamental for the economic recovery of our country. The advantages offered by the group also call the attention of other heads of state. The representative of South Africa in the BRICS, Anil Sooklal, publicly stated that there are 19 countries interested in becoming members of the group. However, the debate on the entry of new members is still at "a very preliminary, exploratory stage", as pointed out by Minister Ana Maria Bierrenbach, general coordinator of Inter-Regional Mechanisms at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Source: Tecmundo

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