BRICS and oil-producing countries
According to Iran Gate, BRICS has opened up a great opportunity for oil-producing countries. It is believed by many analysts that BRICS intends to stabilize the group by involving these countries. BRICS aims to prevent the collapse of the group by manipulating the three oil-producing countries: Saudi Arabia, Iran, and the United Arab Emirates.
The recent invitation by BRICS to six countries, including Saudi Arabia, Argentina, the United Arab Emirates, Iran, Egypt, and Ethiopia, has received various reactions. Many believe that BRICS has organized this invitation to prevent the collapse of the organization by Russia, South Africa, and China. However, the question arises as to why BRICS has given this strange invitation to these six countries. Except for Saudi Arabia and Argentina, whose membership has been discussed for a long time, there seems to be no apparent justification for BRICS’ invitation to the other four countries.
Iran Gate has examined the reasons for this decision by the members of the BRICS group in a two-part case. The first part of this case, known as the Jazer report, provides a general overview of the overall situation of the BRICS members and the deep gap between them and the six countries known as BRICS Plus.
A deepening gap
Before the recent BRICS summit in Johannesburg, many analysts had reported the existence of a deep gap between the BRICS members. This gap has been created due to the significant distance between China and other members, and the Ukraine war has also posed serious risks to Russia’s presence in this group. These risks are so serious that Vladimir Putin, the President of the Russian Federation, did not even dare to travel to Johannesburg and participate in this decisive meeting.
It was expected that if BRICS had any intention of accepting membership from other countries, this membership would be among countries that have high economic growth and potential for global competition. However, the recent decisions made by BRICS have raised the question of what policy this controversial group will adopt to bridge the mentioned gap, and how the six countries that have received the BRICS invitation can contribute to closing this divisive gap.
BRICS and BRICS Plus at a Glance
Examining the three variables of population, Gross Domestic Product (GDP), and oil production levels of BRICS and BRICS Plus members can be instrumental in better understanding the playing field. According to many experts, the selection of these six countries for membership in BRICS not only fails to bridge the existing gap but also adds to the differences among the members. However, this selection will also create new potentials for the three main members of BRICS: China, India, and Russia.
Before any point, it is necessary to examine the mentioned variables regarding the 11 member countries of BRICS and BRICS Plus in order to gain a better understanding of the situation of this group.
The BRICS group has accommodated 46% of the world’s population by inviting new members. The BRICS coalition, which now has eleven members, represents over 3.7 billion people, who will compete against the world’s economic giants, with another 4.3 billion people on the scene.
India, with a population of over 1.444 billion, is at the top, while the United Arab Emirates, with a population of less than 10 million, is at the bottom of the BRICS population ranking. However, China is also in second place, very close to India, as these two countries together account for 35% of the world’s population, accommodating around 800 million people, which is about 10% of the global population.
But when it comes to examining the BRICS share of the global economy, we will encounter significant decreases in numbers. China is far ahead at the top of the table and also has a strong presence in the second position globally. China’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in 2023 is estimated to be over $19 trillion, which is equivalent to China’s 184% share of the world’s economic cake.
Ethiopia also reflects a significant and undeniable gap within the BRICS group with its current GDP of $156 billion. Ethiopia accounts for less than 0.15% of the global economy, despite having a population of 126 million, which is 16% of the world’s total population.
However, the latest variable under scrutiny is the level of oil production among BRICS and BRICS Plus member countries. According to statistics released by the World Trade Organization, oil production is the only sector where new BRICS entrants have been able to increase factors in favor of BRICS. Previously, BRICS accounted for about 20% of global oil production, but now the three new BRICS Plus members, Saudi Arabia, Iran, and the United Arab Emirates, alone produce as much oil as all BRICS members combined.
Saudi Arabia has allocated a 13% share of global oil production to itself by selling over 12 million barrels of oil. Naturally, as the largest oil producer in the world, Saudi Arabia is also leading in BRICS. Russia, which has lost its position as the top oil producer in BRICS, is now in second place with over 11 million barrels of oil production, equivalent to 12% of global oil production. Iran, with a 41% share of global oil production, holds the fifth position among BRICS and BRICS Plus members.
However, due to the lack of natural oil resources, South Africa and Ethiopia are at the bottom of the BRICS oil production table. Egypt is also in the next positions with a 0.7% share, followed by India and Argentina with an 0.8% share. Overall, BRICS produces 40 million barrels of oil per day, which accounts for 43% of global oil production. Saudi Arabia and Russia alone account for over 25% of global oil production and about 40% of BRICS oil production.
In the next section of this report, Iran Gate will analyze the available data.
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