Daily Answer Writing for UPSC –26th August 2023

Question: Analyze the potential advantages and disadvantages of the BRICS grouping’s decision to expand its membership by including six new countries. How might this expansion influence the dynamics of the organization and its role in the global arena?(250 WORDS


GS 2 International Relations

BRICS is a grouping of the world economies of Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa formed by the 2010 addition of South Africa to the predecessor BRIC. In a landmark decision, members of the BRICS declared expansion of the grouping by welcoming six new countries into the fold.

Potential Advantages:

  • Increased Diversity and Representation: The inclusion of Saudi Arabia, Iran, Ethiopia, Egypt, Argentina, and the United Arab Emirates would bring more diverse perspectives, cultures, and economies into BRICS, enhancing its global representation.
  • Economic Strength: The addition of these new members, especially Saudi Arabia, UAE, and Argentina, would add substantial economic heft to the bloc, potentially leading to increased trade, investment opportunities, and collective economic growth.
  • Geopolitical Influence: The expansion could bolster BRICS’ geopolitical influence, with countries like Saudi Arabia, Iran, and Egypt bringing their own strategic significance and international interests to the table.
  • Global South Champion: A larger BRICS with a broader representation of developing countries could amplify its role as a champion of the Global South, advocating for their interests in international forums.

Potential Disadvantages:

  • Complex Decision-Making: Expanding membership might complicate the consensus-building process within the organization due to varying priorities and interests among a larger group of countries.
  • Divergence in Objectives: The new members might have different agendas and priorities, potentially causing conflicts with existing members and diluting BRICS’ unified goals.
  • Resource Allocation: The distribution of resources and benefits might become challenging, leading to disagreements over financial contributions and sharing of benefits.

Influence on Organization Dynamics and Global Arena:

  • Strengthened Global Role: The expansion could potentially elevate BRICS’ influence on global institutions and negotiations, enabling the organization to better advocate for its members’ interests.
  • Economic Cooperation: The increased diversity and economic power could lead to deeper economic cooperation, trade agreements, and joint initiatives among members, contributing to global economic stability.
  • Geopolitical Realignment: The entry of Saudi Arabia, UAE, and Iran could reshape geopolitical alliances, potentially leading to shifts in global power dynamics and alignments.
  • Challenges in Coordination: The larger membership could pose coordination challenges, potentially affecting the efficiency and effectiveness of the organization.

The expansion of BRICS by including six new countries presents opportunities to enhance diversity, economic strength, and geopolitical influence. However, it also introduces challenges related to decision-making, coordination, and divergent priorities. The influence of this expansion on the organization’s dynamics and its role in the global arena will depend on how well the member countries navigate these dynamics and collaborate to achieve their collective goals.

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