Monday, August 20, 2012

No More BRICs/S!

I interrupt my work to bring you the following message.

It’s time that we stopped using the word BRICs/S.

BRICs appears to have been no more than a sales gimmick created by an analyst in an investment bank, who drew an arbitrary line between the countries with the four largest economies (Brazil, Russia, India, and China) and the rest of the Cold War socialist and third world countries. The funny part of this is that BRICs leaders themselves believed the hype around the idea and turned it into a political concept by inviting South Africa into the fold, no doubt leaving Nigeria with wounded pride. Capitalizing the “s” (one also wonders if an invitation would have been extended to a “Meridional” Africa) and making it BRICS also destroyed any sense of coherence, since Mexico, Turkey and Indonesia, to name three, have significantly larger GDPs than South Africa and the first two have significantly higher GDP per capita.

The economies of the original four BRICs had nothing in common to distinguish them from the others in the first place; the intellectually barren notion is well past its consume-by date even as a sales gimmick.

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