By Khulile Thwala
A total of 24 nations are now looking to build a strategic alliance that will challenge the United States dollar’s decades-long role as the world’s reserve currency.
The group of five economically-aligned countries collectively known as BRICS is reportedly on the brink of a massive expansion. The core collective consists of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa – and a surge of nations interested in joining the alliance would bring the total number of nations to 24.
That’s according to South Africa’s BRICS ambassador, Anil Sooklal, who told Bloomberg that a long list of nations are now looking to join in. Sooklal says the list includes 13 countries that have formally asked to join and an additional six countries that have informally requested to be part of the alliance.
The group of known newcomers includes Saudi Arabia, Iran, Argentina, the United Arab Emirates, Algeria, Egypt, Bahrain, Indonesia, two unnamed nations from East Africa and one from West Africa.
BRICS was formed back in 2006, and the original group did not include South Africa, which joined in 2010. According to the Russian state-owned news agency Sputnik, BRICS is in the early stages of developing a new global currency that would circumvent the US dollar.