The World Bank and International Monetary Fund may have a new peer following this week’s meeting of China, Russia, Brazil and India at the 5th BRICS summit taking place in Durban, South Africa. Representing 40% of the world’s population and 25% of global GDP, leaders will discuss the highly-anticipated BRICS Development Bank.
Chinese President Xi Jinping, Russian President Vladimir Putin, Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff and Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will all attend. Organizers have also invited 15 African leaders including the chair of the African Union (AU) and the Heads of State and Government Chairing the AU’s Eight Regional Economic Communities (RECs).
The exact structure of the bank has yet to be determined with diplomats calling for initial investments of $10 to $50 billion from each country. However, many developing nations view the creation of the bank as a tool to access Chinese capital. Chinese leaders hope the bank will support the development of African countries.
For western businesses, the increasing influence of BRICS nations and their investment in emerging markets represents a growing opportunity to acquire new customers as consumerism in these nations continues to thrive. Those considering potential investments in Africa and elsewhere will need to grow their capacity to meet new demand and look to further leverage the resulting stream of cross border data.