The Conference “The Strategy for BRICS Economic Partnership” organized with the support of the Ministry of Economic Development of the Russian Federation took place in Moscow on March, 19. The President of the International Diplomatic Club “Amicability” Sergey Dvoryanov and the expert of the Club, the Vice-President of the International BRICS Forum Mr. Alex Davidovsky took part in the event. Because of Covid 19 most of the conference was online, however, this fact did not interfere with live and open dialog between the participants and many important decisions have been taken during the Conference.
2020 is a very important year for Russia, regarding BRICS. This year Russia is the BRICS President which allows the country to promote its ideas and projects. Russia has always advocated mutually beneficial partnership and the diversity of ways countries develop. BRICS is a good example of a platform where these ideas have been put into practice. BRICS include countries from different regions, countries with different economies, politics and cultures. Nevertheless, during BRICS events the representatives of these countries can discuss global problems and search for ways of cooperation without any bias and anger.
Economic competitiveness of BRICS countries is also beyond question. They have already overcome the G7 by GDP, PPP (Gross domestic product in purchasing power parity prices). China and India are now the countries with the biggest GDP growth, whereas Russia, Brasilia and India have the biggest natural resources supply. Moreover, every country has the potential for even greater development and in perspective can drive European and American goods out of the global market. This can, however, be achieved only through close cooperation and removing economic barriers between the countries.
It was one of the main themes discussed during the conference. The participants approved the idea of developing a free trade system without tax and custom barriers. This proves that Russian ideas go in line with the global international agenda, with the UN Global Development Goals and find great support among other global geopolitical actors.
Another important theme of the BRICS agenda today is broadening the organization to BRICS+. Many countries are now willing to join the organization in order to deepen economic and political ties with the strongest developing countries. However, here we can see many pitfalls and high-rank officials prefer now in their speeches to focus on developing already existing ties than establish new ones. This may be better in short perspective, but I am sure that in the long run BRICS needs to strengthen its geopolitical influence by accepting new members. That is why it is important to speak about BRICS+ now.
Today there are four main economic spheres where deep cooperation between the BRICS countries is crucial: trade, investment, finance and digital economy. Considering trade between BRICS countries, its amount is getting bigger and bigger every year. For instance, in the last year the share of Russian trade with other members of BRICS has grown from 18.2% to 19.2%. The trend may be seen in other countries of the union as well.
Digital economy is another fast developing sphere in every BRICS country. All BRICS countries have already made digitalization one of the main economic priorities and cooperation on this sphere will bring great benefits to them.
Speaking about investment and finances, the situation here leaves much to be desired. The amount of investment flows between the BRICS countries is too small to consider it important. Only investments from China to South Africa are big enough, however, this is example of bilateral economic relations, rather than cooperation within BRICS. The countries now prefer to cooperate in separate areas, invest mostly in fields which have proven its profitability. It is crucial for BRICS to develop international structures dealing with investment as well as speak with local business about perceptiveness of cooperation within BRICS.
Considering everything mentioned above, the BRICS countries have big potential for development and for developing economic cooperation among themselves. Because of the big role of the alliance in the world BRICS countries’ growth will be the growth of all humanity. It is important to mention, that BRICS ideas and goals correspond with Sustainable Development Goals of the UN, which in perspective will provide comfort and peaceful life for every person in the world. Cooperation, dialog and at the same time diversity: these basic principles of BRICS can become the principles of global world system and a basis for building peaceful and multipolar world. Therefore, such conferences as the one in Moscow have great importance for the whole world politics.
Vyacheslav Popov, analyst of the
International Diplomatic Club "Amicability"