The BRICS leaders have decided to invite Argentina, Egypt, Iran, Ethiopia, the UAE and Saudi Arabia to join the group, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa said on Thursday.
"We have decided to invite the Argentine Republic, the Arab Republic of Egypt, the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, the Islamic Republic of Iran, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates to become full members of BRICS. The membership will take effect from January 1, 2024," Ramaphosa said at the BRICS summit in South Africa.
The leaders of the BRICS countries believe that the time has come to use local currencies and alternative payment systems, Cyril Ramaphosa said.
"There is global momentum to use of local currencies, alternative financial arrangements and alternative payment systems. As BRICS we are ready to explore opportunities for improving the stability, reliability and fairness of the global financial architecture," Ramaphosa said at the BRICS Summit media briefing.
According to Ramaphosa, the admission of new members to the BRICS is the first phase of the group's expansion process.
The BRICS leaders have adopted a final declaration following the Johannesburg summit, Ramaphosa added.
"The BRICS leaders in the 15th BRICS summit have over the past two days had occasion to have discussions both in the retreat form, as well as an in a proper official summit, and in the course of those discussions, have reached a conclusion to adopt the Johannesburg II Declaration as a declaration that encompasses and covers the various issues that the leaders had to decide on," Ramaphosa said at the BRICS summit in South Africa.
BRICS is concerned about conflicts in the world and confirms that it stands for a peaceful solution, through a dialogue, the president added.
Russian President Vladimir Putin said that the president of South Africa showed diplomatic skill when discussing issues of expanding. Adaptation of the final BRICS declaration was not easy, including on the issue of enlargement, Putin added.
"The issue of the single settlement currency is a complex issue, but we will move towards solving these problems one way or another," Putin said at the BRICS summit in South Africa.
India welcomes the invitation of new countries to join BRICS and this will serve to strengthen the organization, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi said.
"India has always fully supported the expansion of BRICS membership. India has always believed that new members will further strengthen BRICS as an organization and give a new impetus to our common efforts… I am glad that our teams have jointly agreed on the guidelines, standards, criteria and procedures for expansion and based on this we have agreed to invite Argentina, Egypt, Ethiopia, Iran, Saudi Arabia and the UAE to BRICS. First of all, I would like to convey my most sincere congratulations to the leaders and peoples of these countries," Modi said at the BRICS Summit media briefing.
The current expansion of BRICS is a historic events that shows the determination of the group to work with developing countries, Chinese President Xi Jinping said.
"The current expansion is historic and reflects the determination of the BRICS member states to cooperate with developing countries," Xi said at the BRICS Summit media briefing.
The decision to expand BRICS meets the expectations of the international community and the common interests of developing countries, the Chinese president added.
The President of the United Arab Emirates, Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, thanked the BRICS for approving his country's application to join the group.
"We respect the vision of the BRICS leadership and appreciate the inclusion of the UAE as a member to this important group. We look forward to a continued commitment of cooperation for the prosperity, dignity and benefit of all nations and people around the world," Nahyan said on X, formerly known as Twitter.
Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed congratulated the nation on the approval of its application to join the BRICS.
"Ethiopia’s bid to join the BRICS family endorsed this morning during the 15th BRICS Summit in Johannesburg, South Africa. Congratulations to all Ethiopians!" the office of the Prime Minister said on X, formerly known as Twitter.
Earlier, South African Foreign Minister Naledi Pandor said that BRICS had agreed on the issue of enlargement, and adopted a document outlining its principles.