Members of the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) in a landmark decision have declared expansion of the grouping by welcoming six new countries into the fold.
Argentina, Ethiopia, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and the UAE are to become full members from 1 January 2024.
Announcing the decision at the end of the 15th BRICS summit at Johannesburg, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said addition of new members would strengthen the outfit and increase confidence in the idea of multipolar world order.
Current Chair of BRICS South African President Cyril Ramaphosa presented the Johannesburg Declaration, the outcome document of the summit, and made an indirect reference to the Ukraine conflict saying the grouping’s members had sought “peaceful resolution” of disputes.
“This membership expansion is historic,” said the Chinese president, Xi Jinping, whose country is the most powerful in the group of non-western states that represents a quarter of the world’s economy. “The expansion is also a new starting point for Brics cooperation.
It will bring new vigour to the Brics cooperation mechanism and further strengthen the force for world peace and development.”