Political Economist, Dr Lumkile Mondi, says that the expansion of the BRICS bloc is a big win for South Africa, as it spells increased access to markets that were not fully explored previously.
This follows the addition of Argentina, Egypt, Ethiopia and the United Arab Emirates- as well as Saudi Arabia and Iran to become full BRICS members in January next year.
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Mondi says that while South African companies previously had their fingers burnt in their dealings with Ethiopia, it doesn’t mean that there can’t be improvements.
“The biggest wins for us has been the Arabs, particularly given that they’ve got big ambitions- and we don’t have any trade penetration in Saudi Arabia. The UAE- there’s been huge improvement, and Iran of course provides another opportunity.
But Ethiopia, as well as Egypt, we have had long relations- Ethiopia in fact many South African companies did invest- PPC put a lot of money and they burnt their fingers – they’ve been withdrawing there. I think for those two countries, it’s going to depend on how effective African countries themselves are genuinely implementing investment on infrastructure.”
The Summit is taking place at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg.
Leaders have been discussing the role of Africa in relation to strengthening relations between BRICS and Africa.
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