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BRICS will welcome new members, to better represent voices of emerging market economies: experts

The BRICS should be open to influential countries that better represent the voices of the emerging market economies in the world, and it will allow the organization to become stronger and more united. A more robust BRICS will also serve the purpose of deflecting the efforts of some countries to intensify world turbulence, observers said after government ministers backed BRICS expansion.

Agreements on the countries that will be able to join the organization can only be made after thorough discussions and procedure among BRICS members, Chinese experts said, adding that current G20 members who are interested in joining the BRICS can be prioritized, and Indonesia and other emerging economies could be likely candidates.

“China proposes to study the standards and procedures for BRICS expansion, to gradually form a consensus,” Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi said during an online meeting of the foreign ministers of the BRICS.

According to the joint statement released by the ministers, they supported promoting discussions among BRICS members on the expansion process, and they agreed to further clarify the guiding principles, the standards, criteria and procedures for this expansion process.

Including new members within the organization could better underpin the organization’s positive role in addressing international affairs and offset negative impact of some countries’ attempt to intensity geopolitical confrontation and reverse globalization through forming political blocs, Song Guoyou, deputy director of the Center for American Studies, Fudan University told the Global Times on Saturday.

A BRICS expansion could also lay a foundation for the organization to stay strong among different international groups and in the face of a turbulent world order, a Beijing-based international affairs expert told the Global Times on condition of anonymity.

As for which countries can be considered to enter the organization, the expert said it will be decided after detailed procedures and discussion among the current BRICS member countries, the expert said, noting that “Each country may have its preference of supporting different new members, and eventually BRICS will reach a compromised agreement through coordination and dialogue.”

The five-country BRICS initially formed in 2009 now includes China, Brazil, Russia, India, and South Africa which joined in 2010.

Wang Yiwei, director of the Institute of International Affairs at the Renmin University of China, suggested in an interview with the Global Times on Saturday that countries that belong to G20 members and are also interested in joining the BRICS can be firstly considered.

Indonesia, for instance, as a strong representative of emerging market economies and the biggest Muslim country, is likely to be a potential candidate, Wang noted.

Moreover, Argentina, one of G20 nations, has already expressed its willingness of moving toward ever closer coordination with the BRICS countries, media reports said.

As the purpose of including new members is to strengthen the organization, candidates that may potentially weaken or split the organization will definitely be ruled out, according to the experts.

Wang Wenbin, a spokesperson from the Chinese foreign ministry said that the strength of BRICS lies in its diversity and representation. BRICS members hope to deepen cooperation with other emerging markets and developing countries, and they also expect the appeal of the BRICS to increase.

A “BRICS Plus” consultation was held on Friday evening as part of the virtual BRICS Foreign Ministers’ meeting. Foreign ministers or their representatives from Argentina, Egypt, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Nigeria, the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Senegal and Thailand participated.
Source: Global Times

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