The recent BRICS summit and BIMSTEC outreach highlighted some laudable maritime endeavours linking geographically distant, emerging economies within the grouping. The BIMSTEC platform is also crucial to India's efforts to create a peaceful Bay of Bengal community through economic and cultural linkages.
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The 8th BRICS summit in Goa comes in the midst of major geopolitical events; Brexit, the U.S. elections, the South China Sea dispute, and the terror attacks in Uri. There is much need for BRICS to demonstrate to the world, its capability to manage internal differences and showcase a collective sense of cooperation
Brazil has rarely had it so bad. The country’s economy has collapsed: since 2013, its unemployment rate has nearly doubled, to more than 11 percent, and last year its GDP shrank by 3.8 percent, the largest contraction in a quarter century.
At present, South Africa finds itself charting political and economic policy uncertainties. This is not to suggest that the domestic political crisis will see different trajectories unfolding with regard to its BRICS/IBSA engagements, or on a broader foreign policy path, but it will have repercussions at the international level, in terms of investor confidence, credit ratings, and currency volatility. Pretoria will face constant pressure to be seen as a credible actor, especially when it comes to its African identity.
Narendra Modi’s landslide victory in India's 2014 general elections, despite his hardline nationalist image, was viewed as a localised phenomenon. But two years later, voters across the world from Europe to Philippines seem to be tilting towards leaders with the same nationalist tag.
Although the BRICS caravan is passing through uncertain times, its major leaders appear determined to continue the journey as doing so is in the collective interest. The world is likely to hear more - not less - about BRICS in the foreseeable future.
The recent decision of Brazil's lower house of parliament to impeach President Rousseff has once again brought attention to the country's struggles with corruption. The crisis has already affected Brazil’s economy. Its impact on the region and on Indian businesses in the country is yet to be seen.
Despite major political change in Brazil, Argentina, and Venezuela due to global economic tumult, it may be premature to speak of a rightward shift in Latin American politics. Yet, developments in these democracies need to be monitored carefully as India has a stake in their political stability.
Oliver Stuenkel's book provides a well-researched account of the evolution of BRICS – starting from the forum’s inception in 2009 to the present – and the interactions between Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa on global issues.
At a recent international seminar on BRICS Studies, in addition to the predictable themes such as building a multipolar world order and the One Belt One Road project, fresh ground was also covered, including the contours of the New Development Bank and the potential impact of the refugee crisis on BRICS countries.