Saudi Arabia takes stock of its membership in the BRICS Alliance

At the 2023 annual summit, the BRICS bloc invited six countries to join its collective. Among them, five had responded with the intention of becoming the first expansion countries of the bloc since 2001. However, since the beginning of the year, there has been great uncertainty over the status of Saudi Arabia regarding its membership. to the BRICS alliance.

In January, the rest of the expanding countries joined the BRICS group. However, almost a month later, Saudi Arabia said it was still exploring its options regarding admission to the alliance.

Recent reports indicate that the country has finally provided some sort of update regarding its status in the bloc. Specifically, Saudi Arabia and Russia, chair of BRICS in 2024, held a telephone meeting earlier this week.

Also read: BRICS urge Middle East to abandon US dollar for oil trade

Saudi Arabia and the BRICS Alliance receive a long-awaited update

King MBS Saudi ArabiaKing MBS Saudi Arabia
Source: / Bandar Algaloud / Saudi Royal Court / Reuters

For the BRICS economic alliance, 2023 was a year of monumental importance. The bloc has adopted greater dedollarization efforts that have increased its overall economic autonomy. Furthermore, it had adopted the first real expansion initiative which saw it grow from five nations to a group of ten nations.

Although five new countries have officially accepted the invitations extended, one of the countries receiving the prize of this expansion has reversed its initial decision to join. Specifically, Saudi Arabia has indicated that it is still in the consideration phase regarding joining the BRICS alliance.

While all parties were silent last month, the development received a small update today. Specifically, reports indicated that Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman Al Saud had a phone call with Russian President Vladimir Putin. Indeed, the website of the President of the Russian Federation confirmed that this call took place between the two leaders.

Saudi Arabia MBS Russia Vladimir PutinSaudi Arabia MBS Russia Vladimir Putin
Source: Pavel Golovkin / Reuters

Read also: Saudi Arabia “follows its process” to join BRICS

The two leaders expressed their willingness to continue their cooperative relations. Both leaders stressed the importance of actively developing mutually beneficial initiatives and coordination within OPEC+.

Finally, Mohammed bin Salman Al Saud congratulated Putin on his re-election as Russian president. Putin emerged victorious for a fifth consecutive term. Furthermore, Putin sent his best wishes to the Crown Prince and the people of the Kingdom for the celebration of the Muslim holiday of Ramadan.

Although no date was specified for Saudi Arabia’s membership, the meeting appeared to affirm Riyhad’s intention to join the alliance. The only question now is when its official inclusion will take place.


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