BRICS Summit ‘more about politics than economy’

BRICS Summit ‘more about politics than economy’

Waldo Krugell, who is a professor of Economic Sciences at North-West University, believes the BRICS Summit is more about politics than economics.

President Cyril Ramaphosa at BRICS Summit 2023

BRICS leaders meet in South Africa on Tuesday as the loose association of major emerging economies seeks to assert its voice as a counterweight to Western dominance in global affairs.

The so-called BRICS nations -- Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa -- represent a quarter of the global economy, and interest in joining the club has surged ahead of its three-day summit in Johannesburg.

On the agenda at this year's summit will be the possible future expansion of BRICS membership.

The issue of BRICS expansion is divisive, particularly among its two most powerful members, China and India.

China is keen to rapidly grow the bloc and widen its influence but observers say India is wary of the intentions of its regional rival.

Speaking on The Economics Minute Podcast, Krugell said South Africa doesn’t have any special economic ties with the other BRICS countries.

"South Africa's importance for the BRICS lies in the fact that we think we are a strategic political and economic partner on the African continent. The fact that there is so little going between us, and the economies of the existing and perspective BRICS is not due to obstacles that can be resolved by a summit.

"The idea of cooperation to beneficiate and diversify exports sounds good, but South Africa would have to overcome all our challenges of electricity supply and dilapidated infrastructure to be able to export creatively and create investment opportunities. We cannot expect help and donations from the BRICS," said Krugel. 


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