Being a BRICS member has created new opportunities for South Africa, as the country has strengthened economic ties with the other members of the bloc, President Cyril Ramaphosa has said.
In an address to the nation on Sunday, ahead of this week’s BRICS Summit, the South African leader said membership has boosted collaboration with Russia, China, Brazil, and India in terms of skills, technology, security and innovation.
South Africa has also benefited from the New Development Bank, established by BRICS countries in 2015, Ramaphosa said. “Our country has been funded by the bank in several infrastructure projects to the value of R100 billion (over $5.2 billion) in sectors such as roads, water, transport and energy.”
“We want to build a partnership between BRICS and Africa so that our continent can unlock opportunities for increased trade, investment and infrastructure development,” he noted, adding there are “great opportunities” for other BRICS nations to participate in the African Continental Free Trade Area by relocating production and services there.
The 15th BRICS Summit, taking place in Johannesburg on August 22-24, is expected to address the possible expansion of the bloc. More than 20 countries have formally applied to join BRICS, and several others have expressed an interest.
“South Africa supports the expansion of the membership of BRICS,” Ramaphosa said, noting that “the value of BRICS extends beyond the interests of its current members.”
“BRICS countries can collectively shape global dynamics, and acting together, and have the potential to drive significant changes in the world economy and international relations. An expanded BRICS will represent a diverse group of nations with different political systems that share a common desire to have a more balanced global order,” the South African leader concluded.
Source: Russia Today