Zimbabwe makes headway towards joining Brics bank

Herald Reporter

Zimbabwe’s bid for admission into the BRICS New Development Bank has been given a huge boost following the recent pledge of support by Russia, South Africa, and now Brazil.

Currently, indications are pointing at Zimbabwe, together with Argentina and Saudi Arabia, being officially announced as new members of the NDB at the BRICS summit to be held in South Africa this August.

The BRICS bloc consists of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, that are expanding and building a new economic order to challenge the dominance of the US dollar, consequently creating multiple lines of credit away from the Bretton Woods institutions.

In an interview yesterday, Brazil’s Secretary for Africa and Middle East in the Ministry of External Relations, Ambassador Carlos Duarte, said Zimbabwe’s admission was an active issue which the bloc was seized with.

He said Zimbabwe’s willingness to join the NDB would not affect its ultimate goal to become a full BRICS member and vice versa.

“It’s still a dynamic issue, we are working on it. I think the expansion of BRICS and the participation in the Development Bank are two different things but in both cases, there is a criterion for that, a technical criterion and Brazil also sees a possibility of having partner countries if they are not fully members so one thing does not impede the other. You can be a partner or you can receive investments, it’s not something exclusive,” he said.

Economist Mr Persistence Gwanyanya said Zimbabwe’s admission into the NDB is desirable.

“It comes at a time when we are excluded from the international financial systems especially from the West. We should seek alternative institutions, the global economic financial power is shifting from the West to the East.

“So the new normal reality is that the flow of capital is now Southwards and even in influence, from the West to the East, every effort is well informed and in good order.

“As a country, we need to seek ways to benefit in the change of the global order and as we seek to join the BRICS Development Bank we must see the value we can get from that,” he said.

Russian Ambassador to Zimbabwe Mr Nikolai Krasilnikov said his country was behind Zimbabwe’s bid to join the NDB and ultimately the BRICS bloc.

Once admitted, Zimbabwe would surely emerge stronger in the face of adversity wrought by the illegal US-imposed sanctions, he said.

“The BRICS group of countries is now discussing the bloc’s currency and this is key also for Zimbabwe to make use of.

“The New Development Bank by BRICS is expanding that initiative and Zimbabwe expressed interest to join the bank. We should not cry about sanctions though they are upsetting. They affect the ordinary people and the economy, but we should emerge stronger,” said Ambassador Krasilnikov in an earlier interview.

President Mnangagwa has said the BRICS provides Zimbabwe with an ideal home of like-minded nations, especially of the South.

“To us, BRICS is family, and it is our hope that with the joining of more developing countries, BRICS will represent the Global South with a louder voice on the world stage. Developing countries should stand together and refuse to be intimidated by imperialist behaviour.

“Zimbabwe, like many other countries in Africa, is committed to pursuing a path to sustained economic growth and transformation through continental integration. We are pleased to be working with the BRICS partners to successfully implement our market integration objectives.

“African countries and BRICS nations share similar views and interests in improving and reforming the current international order and global governance system. The world needs a just global order which provides the future we want, which leaves no one and no place behind,” said the President in his keynote address at the 15th BRICS summit delivered on his behalf by Vice President Dr Constantino Chiwenga.

Finance, Economic Development and Investment Promotion Minister, Professor Mthuli Ncube earlier said joining the BRICS Bank would diversify Zimbabwe’s sources of credit, something which the country needed.

“Joining the BRICS Bank is critically important for Zimbabwe, so Zimbabwe can then diversify its sources of credit, its sources of development finance, its sources of credit finance in order to develop the country,” said Professor Ncube.

“At the moment, Zimbabwe is a member of the African Development Bank, the Afreximbank for example and then also GDB Bank, the World Bank and then the IMF. So, if you can add the New Development Bank, which is the BRICS Bank, that would be great. It will further diversify our sources of finance.

“Hopefully, beyond joining the bank we can then move on as a country and join the entire BRICS which again augers well for Zimbabwe and positioning among the nations that are growing and growing pretty fast,” said the Minister.

Zimbabwe’s approval as a new member of the NDB will de-risk concentration dependency on traditional funders and open alternative avenues for lines of credit and funding.

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