Judging by recent developments in the global politics arena, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia looks set to join the union of Brics, which is constituted by Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.
In a televised interview that was broadcast on Tuesday by the SABC, President Cyril Ramaphosa confirmed Saudi Arabia’s intentions, saying that Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman expressed to him the Kingdom’s desire to join BRICS during his Working Visit last week to the middle east country.
“In 2023, the BRICS summit will be held under the South African presidency and this request will be studied.
“Several countries are in contact with the BRICS and we have assured them that the accession issue will be discussed, and a decision will be made,” Ramaphosa said.
So, what would such a move mean geopolitically and in terms of the shift in economic power at a global level? Vulankungu posed this question to Lunga Mrhetjha, a Political Analyst and Social Commentator.
“Well, it’s hard to say definitively at this moment but the Saudi kingdom has been an instrumental player in major world events as they impacted the middle-east, especially in the latter part of the 20th century.
“The 1973 oil embargo which led to a fuel crisis in the West and eventually triggered a cost-pushed inflation demonstrated the powers of oil rich nations when they decide to stand in solidarity. The United States moved swiftly to try and circumvent such a situation from ever happening again and that’s how the Petro Dollars emerged,” he pointed out.
Since Saudi Arabia has had a fairly good relationship with the West, and the United States acting as its bodyguard throughout the years, Mrhetjha is of the view that Russia’s military operation in Ukraine has affected that Saudi-US relationship in many ways that were beyond anyone’s imagination.
“With world power seemingly shifting towards the Russia-China axis, I think Saudi Arabia is motivated by the issue of national security more than anything else. Aligning with those who seem destined to emerge victorious from this current proxy war makes logical sense.
“The Saudis are contemplating a future without the mighty United States at the helm of world power and their strategic positioning is in line with that possible outcome,” he explained.
Another big factor that might come into play as the petrodollar begins losing its value, is the issue of climate change. The West has begun a campaign to end the use of fossil fuels while oil-rich countries like Russia, Saudi Arabia, and several African nations are not willing to succumb to that pressure.
The coming months will determine who gets the upper hand between the Western countries that are promoting ‘renewables’ and the rest of the world that wants to continue using a reliable source of energy.