BRICS and the Rivalry Pandemic
Want to know more about global politics?
Subscribe to our distribution list
Timofei V. Bordachev

Doctor of Political Science
National Research University–Higher School of Economics, Moscow, Russia
Faculty of World Economy and International Affairs
Centre for Comprehensive European and International Studies
Academic Supervisor;
Valdai Discussion Club, Moscow, Russia
Program Director


SPIN-RSCI: 6872-5326
ORCID: 0000-0003-3267-0335
ResearcherID: E-9365-2014
Scopus AuthorID: 56322540000


E-mail: [email protected]
Tel.: +7(495) 772-9590 *22186
Address: Office 427, 17 Malaya Ordynka Str. Bldg.1, Moscow 119017, Russia

Viktoria Panova

PhD in History, Vice-Rector of the National Research University Higher School of Economics, Sherpa of the Russian Federation in the Women’s Twenty (W20)


SPIN-RSCI: 9610-3245
ORCID: 0000-0002-1988-6476

Dmitry V. Suslov

Deputy Director of the Center for Comprehensive European and International Studies at the National Research University–Higher School of Economics.

Valdai Discussion Club Report

So, where should BRICS be headed now that it has gone beyond basic dialogue among the five nations? While not planning to become a non-western replica of the G7, BRICS is gradually becoming a global governance centre, and such questions must be considered.

The “crumbling” of the previous order naturally gives rise to attempts to create new institutions if not for global governance, then at least for coordinating the actions of individual countries as they pursue their vital national interests. The BRICS countries have sought such coordination to strengthen the position of each of the five member countries, not only for the sake of their own stability amid a rising tide of chaos, but to lift up the voice of developing countries in general. The main challenge such associations face is determining, at both the theoretical and practical levels, their goals, the capabilities of different members and their degree of real impact on global politics and economics.

Over the 10-plus years of its existence, BRICS has made great strides. Initially, it emerged as an association of major developing economies, but with South Africa, which ranks 25th in terms of GDP (PPP), joining it in 2011, such positioning became irrelevant. In exchange, the union became much more representative and global in geographical terms.

In light of the above, greater cooperation with countries as part of the BRICS+ format and expanded partnerships should be among BRICS’ top priorities in the years to come.

BRICS+ should maintain a dialogue with the countries that are most committed to the goal of forming a polycentric world order, pursue an independent policy and can help solve specific global and regional problems. Above all, this includes non-western G20 members (Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Indonesia, South Korea, Mexico and Argentina). However, the effort should not be limited to these countries.

BRICS is open to partnership when it comes to promoting ideas or achieving the goals of universal well-being. As long as the full-fledged expansion of BRICS remains impractical, it is imperative to be in constant dialogue with non-western countries that share the strategic views of the Big Five.

Valdai Discussion Club