When British economist Jim O’Neill dubbed the fast-growing, large, emerging market economies of Brazil, Russia, India and China as “BRICs” in 2001, few could have imagined that an acronym invented by a Goldman Sachs banker could today become a potent symbol of rising multi-polarity in a world formerly dominated by Western powers. But that is exactly what has happened.
The grouping added South Africa a decade later to become BRICS. These countries account for some 40 percent of the world’s population, almost a quarter of global gross domestic product (GDP) and some 16 percent of total exports. China is the economic heavyweight, inflating the numbers, but BRICS should not be weighed by the size of its economies or the value of its exports. Nor should the concept be confined to BRICS alone. Read more.