Aug 24, 2023 - World

BRICS to admit 6 new members including Saudi Arabia and Iran

President of Brazil Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, President of China Xi Jinping, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov pose during the 2023 BRICS Summit in Johannesburg on Aug. 23. Photo: Gianluigi Guercia/AFP via Getty Images

China, Russia and other members of the BRICS emerging economies bloc on Thursday invited Saudi Arabia, Iran and four additional nations to join the group next year in what will be the bloc's first expansion in more than a decade.

Why it matters: The expansion, which will also see Argentina, Egypt, Ethiopia and the United Arab Emirates admitted to the group, will strengthen the bloc's position as it seeks to counter the Western-led world order. Chinese President Xi Jinping hailed the expansion as "historic."

  • Other current members include Brazil, India and South Africa.

What they're saying: White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan told reporters on Tuesday that the Biden administration is "not looking at the BRICS as evolving into some kind of geopolitical rival to the United States or anyone else."

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