Iran, Egypt and Saudi Arabia are among six countries set to join Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa in the BRICS economic group next year, the bloc announced Thursday, a move that will likely throw more scrutiny on Beijing’s political influence in the Persian Gulf.
The United Arab Emirates, Argentina and Ethiopia are also set to become new members of BRICS in 2024.
BRICS was set up in 2009 as a group of emerging market economies and has become one of the leading voices for more representation of the developing world and the so-called global south in world affairs.
It currently represents around 40% of the world’s population and more than a quarter of the world’s GDP, although that is set to increase with the new members, which include three of the world’s biggest oil producers in Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Iran.
Recently, questions have been raised whether BRICS is taking an anti-West turn under the influence of China and Russia amid Beijing’s deteriorating relationship with Washington and Moscow’s stand-off with the West over its war in Ukraine…