Reshaping Global Dynamics: BRICS Summit 2023 And Emergence Of New Geopolitical Era – Analysis

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The BRICS alliance, consisting of Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa, is preparing for its forthcoming Summit from August 22nd to 24th in Johannesburg, South Africa. As the host, South Africa has extended invitations to 69 countries, including African heads of nations and organizations from the Global South. The upcoming Summit holds significant global importance and is expected to be a platform for diplomatic engagement and collaboration among these nations.

Definitely, the upcoming BRICS Summit in South Africa has captured global attention as it nears its conclusion. This summit carries substantial importance for global geopolitics, primarily due to its central focus on introducing a shared currency among the BRICS nations. This proposed currency aims to lessen the influence of the US Dollar in international trade, potentially leading to a reconfiguration of the global geopolitical dynamics and posing a challenge to the dominance of the United States. BRICS members actively support this initiative including Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa (The Hindu, August 10, 2023).

Historical Background of BRICS Formation

During the early 2000s, the concept of BRICS emerged as a coalition of emerging economies sharing common interests and gaining prominence in global affairs. Coined by Goldman Sachs economist Jim O’Neill in 2001, the term “BRIC” highlighted Brazil, Russia, India, and China as swiftly growing economies with transformative potential for the world economy. The inaugural BRIC Summit convened in Yekaterinburg, Russia, in 2009, where leaders from these nations gathered to address mutual challenges, explore collaborative opportunities, and bolster their global standing. The addition of South Africa in 2010 transitioned BRIC into BRICS, a strategic move diversifying the group and providing representation from Africa, thus fortifying its worldwide influence. 

At its core, BRICS aspired to establish a platform fostering discourse and cooperation encompassing diverse facets such as economics, politics, and security. This union sought to advocate for multipolarity within the global system, aiming for a more equitable and just world order. With summits becoming an annual tradition, BRICS solidified its role as a venue for leaders to deliberate critical global issues and harmonize policies, while collaboration expanded to encompass economic affairs, developmental initiatives, and cultural exchanges. Notably, the establishment of the New Development Bank (NDB) in 2014, previously known as the BRICS Development Bank, demonstrated the alliance’s commitment to funding sustainable development projects across BRICS and other emerging economies, thereby offering an alternative to conventional financial institutions. In tandem, the creation of the Contingent Reserve Arrangement (CRA) in 2015 provided a financial safety net, ensuring member nations’ liquidity during times of fiscal uncertainty. Leveraging their collective influence, BRICS nations advocated for reform within renowned global institutions like the United Nations, IMF, and World Bank, advocating for amplified representation of emerging economies. Evolving over time, the BRICS agenda broadened its scope to encompass discussions on innovation, technology, healthcare, counter-terrorism, and sustainable development, demonstrating the alliance’s adaptability and relevance in an ever-changing world (Hooijmaaijers, 2021).

Role of BRICS in Shaping Geopolitical Narratives

The longstanding dominance of the US Dollar in worldwide trade and transactions has granted the United States substantial economic and geopolitical advantages. The US has historically employed the Dollar and its economic strength to pressure opponents and achieve political objectives, often imposing sanctions that disproportionately affect developing countries. This has generated mounting opposition against American hegemony, supremacy, and coercive tactics. Some countries and leaders have resisted Dollar domination, but the US typically responded with dismissive actions, resulting in adverse consequences for nations like Iraq, Libya, and certain countries in South and Latin America.

The proposition of introducing a common currency within BRICS or de-dollarization aims to disrupt this established order, potentially diminishing the influence and power derived from the Dollar’s prominence. The BRICS alliance, characterized by its substantial impact on global trade and investments, stands out as a potent force free from American sway. This initiative signifies a rising dissatisfaction with the global dominance of the US Dollar and signifies a movement towards a shift in economic power towards the East, indicating a broader transformation of the global economy. BRICS grouping emerged from the recognition of the growing economic and geopolitical influence of its member nations. It has evolved from an economic concept into a platform for cooperation, influencing global dynamics and advocating for a more balanced international order (Serbin, 2022).

Central Agenda:Common Currency Among BRICS Nations

Undoubtedly, the upcoming BRICS Summit is poised to place a critical spotlight on a central theme of paramount importance. At the heart of this summit’s agenda lies a groundbreaking proposition the establishment of a shared or common currency within the BRICS consortium. Comprising Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa, these nations are engaging in thorough discussions concerning the potential adoption of a singular monetary unit for trade and financial activities among their ranks.

This envisioned “common currency” seeks to revolutionize how these nations conduct international transactions and foster economic cooperation. By doing so, it aspires to harmonize their financial interactions and enhance their collective economic clout. As the summit nears, all eyes are on this pivotal discourse, considering the far-reaching consequences this initiative could have on reshaping economic dynamics and collaborative efforts within the BRICS alliance (TOI, July 8, 2023).

Potential Alliances and Collaborations Beyond BRICS

The stance of key BRICS nations towards the proposed common currency initiative is notable and indicative of their collective aspirations. Russian officials, including Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, have strongly supported the concept, emphasizing that the combined economic might of the BRICS nations justifies a search for alternatives to the prevailing dominance of the US Dollar in the global financial structure. Their vision extends to the potential benefits of a unified currency within BRICS, which could foster increased economic collaboration and contribute to a more just and balanced global order. Similarly, China, a significant global economic player led by President Xi Jinping, aligns with this sentiment. 

President Xi advocates for BRICS nations to unite their resources to challenge the existing Dollar-centric financial framework, envisioning a new currency that could engender a more harmonious global economy and mitigate unilateral influence. Importantly, President Xi underscores the need for a united effort within BRICS and beyond to realize this vision. Echoing these sentiments, Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro affirms that the partnership within BRICS provides an avenue to challenge the prevailing norms that disproportionately favor the US Dollar. He sees the potential for a common BRICS currency to not only bolster economic cooperation but also to ensure a fairer representation of the collective strength shared by member nations.

Meanwhile, the South African perspective, as conveyed by Ambassador Sooklal, signals a possible shift towards using native currencies for cross-border transactions within BRICS. This perspective hints at a potential move to reduce reliance on the US Dollar in global trade discussions at the upcoming summit. In essence, this article underscores a collective sentiment among major BRICS nations Russia, China, Brazil, and potentially South Africa in favor of exploring alternatives to the prevailing US Dollar-dominated financial system. These nations perceive the proposed common currency within BRICS as a potential mechanism to challenge established norms, foster greater economic cooperation, and create a more balanced and inclusive global financial landscape (Reuters, July 20, 2023).

India’s Stance and Complexity

India’s External Affairs Minister, S. Jaishankar, conveyed in a recent press conference that the country has no intentions of pursuing a BRICS currency. This announcement comes a month ahead of the summit, indicating India’s potential withdrawal from the proposed new currency initiative. Instead, India is dedicated to strengthening its national currency, the Rupee, with a focus on enhancing its value. The justification for this decision lies in India’s strong GDP performance, making it self-reliant within the bloc. Moreover, India maintains robust relations with the U.S. and Europe, underpinned by substantial trade and military agreements valued in billions of dollars.

Consequently, India aims to avoid jeopardizing its trade with Western powers by abstaining from the upcoming BRICS currency, which is yet to be introduced. India’s stance aptly mirrors its endeavor to deftly manage a fine equilibrium. The country seeks to navigate the delicate balance between its robust ties with the United States and Europe on one end and its active involvement and cooperative engagement within the BRICS alliance on the other. In essence, India aims to safeguard its multifaceted interests by avoiding any course of action that might undermine the advantageous trade and military frameworks that are already in place with Western nations (Hindustan Times, Jul 03, 2023).


The BRICS alliance, comprising Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa, is considering the creation of a new currency to handle international trade payments, with the intention to challenge the dominant global reserve status of the US dollar. The upcoming BRICS summit in August 2023, to be held in Johannesburg, South Africa, may serve as the platform for a collective decision on introducing this new BRICS currency. While the majority of BRICS nations, including Brazil, Russia, China, and South Africa, appear to support the idea of a common currency, India stands out as the only country within the alliance that has not shown enthusiasm for this plan.

The emergence of discussions surrounding a potential BRICS common currency prompts India to exercise prudence in embracing the initiative, driven by concerns that such a move might introduce complexities and uncertainties into its well-established trade relations with the Western powers. Striking a balance between its strong ties with the United States and Europe on one hand, and active participation in the BRICS alliance on the other, India skillfully manages its stance. The country’s aim is to safeguard its multifaceted interests, avoiding actions that could compromise the advantageous trade and military frameworks already established with Western nations. The impending BRICS Summit in South Africa carries the potential for substantial geopolitical shifts. The proposal to introduce a shared currency among BRICS countries signifies a daring endeavor to counter the entrenched supremacy of the US Dollar. The summit’s outcome might herald the onset of a fresh chapter in global finance and geopolitics, potentially reshaping the prevailing global order.

About the authors:

  • Balinder Singh (Ph.D. Scholar), Department of Political Science, School of Social Sciences, Central University of Himachal Pradesh, Dharmshala, India. Email: [email protected]
  • Prof. Jagmeet Bawa, Head Department of Political Science, School of Social Sciences, Central University of Himachal Pradesh, Dharmshala, India. Email: [email protected]


Hindustan Times. (Jul 03, 2023). Jaishankar Makes Big Comment on BRICS Currency Plans Amid De-Dollarisation Push. Available online: (Accessed on 14 August 2023).

Hooijmaaijers, B. (2021). The BRICS countries’ bilateral economic relations, 2009 to 2019: Between rhetoric and reality. Sage Open11(4), 21582440211054128.

Reuters. (July 20, 2023). BRICS currency not on August summit agenda, South African official says. Available online:             (Accessed on 14 August 2023).

Serbin, A. (2022). BRICS Political and Geopolitical Challenges: A View from the South. Available online: Accessed on 14 August 2023).

The Hindu. (August 10, 2023). PM Modi to attend BRICS summit in Johannesburg later this month. Available online: (Accessed on 14 August 2023).                                

TOI. (July 8, 2023). BRICS’s plan to float a common currency & India’s reaction to it. Available online: (Accessed on 14 August 2023).

Balinder Singh

Balinder Singh (PhD Scholar), Department Political Science, Central Univesity of Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, India.

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