Ethiopia’s BRICS Future

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

Ethiopia, along with Saudi Arabia, Argentina, Iran, the United Arab Emirates, and Egypt, has been extended an invitation to join the BRICS group of developing economies. In addition, the United Arab Emirates, Argentina, Egypt, and Ethiopia are expected to become members of the bloc starting in 2024.

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa, the current BRICS chair, announced this development during the BRICS summit in Johannesburg on August 24, 2023. The BRICS consortium currently comprises Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa – emerging economies that agreed, during this week’s summit, to enlarge the bloc.

This marks the second instance of BRICS opting for expansion. The coalition was established in 2009 with the inclusion of Brazil, Russia, India, and China. South Africa’s accession followed in 2010. The BRICS consortium encompasses approximately 40% of the global population and contributes over a quarter of the worldwide GDP.

Present at the summit were three of the other leaders of the group, who joined Cyril Ramaphosa during the announcement: Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and Chinese President Xi Jinping.

Russian President Vladimir Putin who joined the proceedings remotely welcomed new members and announced ‘addition of new group of nations makes BRICS a more dynamic international multi-lateral body.’ Similarly President Xi of China also praised new member states for their ‘demonstrated cooperation to promote international rules and norms.

The addition of Ethiopia is a sign of the country’s growing influence on the African geopolitical space, and the BRICS mission to attract big population centers of the global south. Ethiopia could potentially benefit from needed financing from New Development Bank, established by BRICS. The bank has a total volume of $30 billion in loans approved to different countries so far.

Overall economic performance forecast by the International Monetary Fund(IMF) for Ethiopia.

Ethiopia, which is not new to multilateral institutions, is a founding member of the African Union, headquartered in Addis Ababa. The country is also the first African state to be represented at the United Nations. Recent difficulties with conflict and an internal political crisis have impeded its growth potential. Nonetheless, the IMF estimates the country’s GDP will grow at 6.2% in 2023, making it one of the fastest in the world. For the BRICS organization Ethiopia offers a unique opportunity to expand its influence on the African continent. Ethiopia is also preparing to make a bid to join the World Trade Organization (WTO).

Related Posts