BRICS Expansion: Welcoming Middle Eastern Nations Into The Fold – Analysis


In the face of unprecedented global polarization, the BRICS alliance has made an impressive step forward by revealing an expanded new strategy that resembles a thriving garden of variety. This strategic step entails the admission of six new members to the BRICS family.

This extension, in particular, offers a compelling vision, conjuring up images of five Muslim-majority Middle Eastern countries finding their place within this platform. These new arrivals bring with them a slew of one-of-a-kind chances with global ramifications. It is critical to investigate the logic underlying the BRICS’ daring and forward-thinking activities. This choice, suggestive of a strong motor powering development, intends to accelerate their purpose of altering a dominant international order that they regard as archaic and obsolete.

Moreover, the consortium’s leaders have issued an open invitation, analogous to a warm and welcoming embrace, perhaps announcing the entry of a slew of new nations into this dynamic alliance—a vision akin to a garden of growing possibilities. These countries are united in their ambition to correct what they see as an unbalanced global environment, one that looks to be as unjustly stacked against their interests as a crooked game of chance.

What does it signify for the Middle East?

Harnessing Oil Power with Inclusion of Middle Eastern Nations

The recent rise of influential Arab nations—Saudi Arabia, Iran, and the UAE—in the global oil market has sparked a profound transformation. Amidst this shift, the BRICS nations have identified a remarkable opportunity. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC)’s limited responsiveness has created a strategic opening for BRICS countries to forge an oil coalition. This audacious move could potentially reshape the dynamics of the worldwide oil market.

At the core of this strategy lies the BRICS bloc’s self-perceived role as the driving force behind economic advancement in the Global South. Recognizing the potential synergy, these emerging industrial giants are contemplating the inclusion of established oil-producing countries into their fold. With India, China, and South Africa predominantly dependent on oil imports, and Iran, Saudi Arabia, and the UAE being formidable oil producers, this envisioned integration carries mutual benefits.

Incorporating these Middle Eastern oil producers into the BRICS alliance promises advantages for both existing members and potential future entrants. This transformation not only signifies an alignment of economic prowess but also exemplifies a visionary approach toward global collaboration and influence.

Securing Reliable Energy Supply: A Rational Case for Integrating Established Oil Producers

The pragmatic idea of assimilating well-established oil-producing nations into the realm of industrial economies stands on solid ground. With the majority of oil-exporting countries, especially those within the BRICS constellation, actively pursuing uninterrupted energy supply, this proposition bears clear logic. The driving force behind this pursuit stems from the substantial demand for oil by major economies such as India and China.

Saudi Arabia and Iran, in particular, hold pivotal roles as principal oil suppliers to these nations. Given the existing constraints and limitations imposed by Western counterparts, the imperative arises for BRICS to engineer an optimal approach for securing and maintaining energy flow. The ongoing expansion endeavors have aptly served as a means to realize this objective, effectively forging a bridge between reliable energy supply and the collective interests of the BRICS nations.

Forging Links across Regions: Enhanced Connectivity from Indo-Pacific to Africa and the Middle East

The integration of Middle Eastern nations into the sphere of connectivity has ushered in a new dimension of linkages spanning Africa, the Middle East, East Asia, and South Asia. This evolution has taken place independently of prominent initiatives like the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), the Security and Growth for All in the Region (SAGAR), and the Indo-Pacific concept. Through the incorporation of these fresh members, a distinct web of interconnections has been established, distinguished by its autonomous cooperative approach.

Furthermore, the enlistment of Iran and Egypt into the BRICS alliance carries additional strategic benefits. It serves as a safeguard for oil supply and bolsters the security of crucial maritime routes—namely, the Strait of Hormuz and the Suez Canal. This collaborative move enhances stability and ensures the smooth flow of vital resources through these pivotal waterways.

Culture’s Role in Inclusivity beyond Determination

The role of culture does not act as a sole determinant in the inclusivity of individuals. Moreover, the BRICS coalition, comprised of five diverse nations with varying cultures, has recently unveiled its policy of non-exclusion. This sets the alliance apart from Western counterparts, as BRICS has chosen not to overlook the Arab world but rather to harness the opportunities stemming from its engagement.

The void left by Western nations is being effectively filled by BRICS. While the Western world maintained favorable ties with the Arab region over a considerable period, it refrained from establishing a strategic cooperative bond akin to the G7. In contrast, the unique coalition of BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa) emerged as a distinct force that engaged with the Arab world, consequently gaining support and influence within this region.

Strategies to Mitigate Detrimental Effects of Economic Sanctions

The inclusion of Russia and now Iran into the BRICS fold, accompanied by the expanding participation of various economies, raises substantial concerns regarding the effectiveness of economic sanctions as tools of Western dominance. In light of these considerations, a potential avenue for mitigating impending economic challenges lies in the establishment of seamless economic integration among states. Simultaneously, highlighting the significance of BRICS nations in securing their own economic futures can contribute to alleviating adverse effects.

Prospects of Reconciliation

Insufficient details have been provided to rework the user’s text into an academic context. The issue of reconciliation has garnered notable attention, particularly owing to China’s endeavors as a BRICS member in facilitating rapprochement between Saudi Arabia and Iran. Given the presence of BRICS nations, there exists potential for additional reconciliation initiatives within the Arabian region, potentially addressing crises such as the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Support from BRICS could play a crucial role in realizing these prospects.

To summarize, a novel fusion in the form of the Middle-South collaboration within the BRICS framework. The inclusion of Middle Eastern nations has effectively laid the groundwork for connecting the regions of the Middle East and the southern hemisphere. This strategic move has brought forth the concept of a cohesive link between these two regions, bridging the previous gap. The Middle Eastern countries, previously somewhat divided in their orientation towards the global North or South, now have the platform to present themselves as integral to the Middle-South cooperation. This approach serves as a balancing act in response to the swiftly evolving global landscape. Simultaneously, this development has put a halt to the emergent concept of the Global South being newly defined. The inclusion of these Middle Eastern nations has reshaped and redefined the dynamics of the Global South, offering a fresh perspective and altering the trajectory that was being formed.

S. M. Saifee Islam

S. M. Saifee Islam is a Research Analyst at the Center for Bangladesh and Global Affairs (CBGA), Dhaka, Bangladesh.

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