Brick by brick´, the BRICS rises as Six Countries enter the Club…the New World Order is Nigh and high- Amb. Anthony Mukwita

How to become a Tyrant- Amb. Anthony Mukwita

Brick by brick´, the BRICS rises as Six Countries enter the Club
…the New World Order is Nigh and high

26th Aug 2023

By Amb. Anthony Mukwita

It’s been an eventful and interesting week for pundits of international relations, even for those that are not, as the new geopolitical group BRICS expanded from five to 11, taking crucial numbers and names.
BRICS, the acronym for Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa that challenges the long standing might of the US, its allies in the EU including institutions such as the World Bank and IMF cannot be ignored anymore.
It is rising and shaking the comfort of the world economic political order presently dominated by the US and its allies in the EU.
A Guardian newspaper article I read starkly said, “the Brics group of big emerging economies has announced the admission of six new members, in an attempt to reshape the global world order and provide a counterweight to the US and its allies.”


Earlier Thursday in the glitzy Sandton burb, BRICS hosting Chair President of South Africa Cyril Ramaphosa triumphantly said, “from the beginning of next year, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Argentina, the UAE and Ethiopia will join the current five members – Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.”
Another essay cited China’s president, Xi Jinping, saying the expansion is “historic”. He has been the leading proponent of the admission of new members, presenting an enlarged Brics as a way for the global south to have a stronger voice in world affairs.
The truth according to international relations pundits is that emerging economies are tired of being tired of being bullied by the US and allies, they now seek alternative powers and BRICS, soon to change its name following the entry of the six, offers just that.
Among the things they (BRICS+Six) seek is an alternative payment system that must not restrict international trade to the US dollar, SWIFT system and one that provides institutions away from the World Bank and the IMF.
By the way, complaints abound on western dominance traits such as ´the World Bank President must always be an America while the IMF boss always must be a European´, not an African or Asian etc.
Conversely, the World Bank is expected to face a huge challenge and reduced power as BRICS+Six introduces the New Development Bank or NDB which is supposed to have better lending conditions than the Bank and the Fund.
The dollar, already weakened by the Euro´s introduction in 1999, is expected to get a further knock once the BRICS+Six founds a new currency or trade in their own currencies, China, Russia, and India are already doing that.


Fifteen years ago when the BRIC started, before South Africa, the wester world mocked and laughed as they often do when they understand nothing or fear something, very dismissive.
Half witted hack scribes from the Financial Times and others mocked the BRICS with derogatory terms like, “BRICS without Mortar” another western hack described it as “not a group” adding that its members lacked a ´common ideology´.
The mocking names continued with another hack calling BRICS “the motley crew” and the “random bunch.” Very funny.
But who is laughing now? the western media that scoffed at BRICS this week beat a path to Mzansi (Joburg) to witness the rise and rise of BRICS, eating from the palms of the same motley crew they mocked. C´est la vie.


Momentarily, I do not know whether Zambia is among the forty countries that applied to join BRICS ahead of the summit but whats interesting to me as an international relations expert, former head of mission and published author.

I beseech Zambian journalists to forward this question to the desk of President Hakainde Hichilema for answers because I believe as a diplomat, we must talk to everyone, not one group or ´centric´.

Although BRICS is on the rise sceptics abound with others saying the scepticism must be in measured tones because BRICS, like it or not is gaining traction.
An analyst cited in the Guardian says, “there is not likely to be an immediate economic benefit from membership for members, who already have extensive bilateral ties with China.”

The analyst adds, “the group’s New Development Bank is still relatively small.” But analysts said that “although the move is largely symbolic that does not mean it is unimportant.”


The analysis adds, “This (BRICS rise) is significant, and shouldn’t be dismissed by G7 and other global north actors. With these new members – especially the major oil producing ones – on board UAE, Saudi Arabia, and Iran, the Brics configuration represents a much more significant share of the global economy and global population.”
Take for instance the fact that BRICS now boasts of more than 40 percent of the global population, to rise further once Indonesia with its 274 million is accepted.
Where is Zambia in this fast-paced geopolitical story, are we going to wait and watch from the terraces before we jump in or maybe it’s only on a “need to know basis”?
You can find further details and insights on BRICS+6 in my new book, “China in Africa, the Zambia story” available in Bookworld, Grey Matter, Amazon and Takealot.

Amb. AM 26.08.23.


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