BRICS and all agreements among blocks are above any country individually considered and contribute greatly to build a global system on accountability. The same criteria apply to United Nations, no matter the lack of transparency or/and accountability identify in one of each member it remains part of the institution. Global stability is not about dealing with internal affairs but with global ones for whom there is a certain degree of screening over the Nation member. That is the best way to boost resilience at institutional terms, instead of sanctions, dialogue, and a promising agreement for those aspects that may be a synergy.
For instance, Germany imports 50 to 75% natural gas from Russia. Is not desirable to think that as a member of the European Union their commercial agreement should be boycotted. The same with the rest of BRICS countries, all emerging economies with an important impact on the global economical stability. Russia with commodities, Brasil, agriculture, India services, and China manufacturing it’s a reality that cannot be denied even if it is not clear the level of vulnerability of Human Rights in each country member. In a post-pandemics scenario, the European Union should focus on global cohesion and the construction of an accountability system that results from this approach. The capacity to join efforts may gain a new dimension, creative enough to build bridges beyond constraints of any kind.
Even if BRICS has originally come from an Anti-American movement, is not their actions that may us analyzing as so. After Trump´s era, the idea of nationalism and a determined break with a global system is the principle that guides the new destinies of America and the entire world. It demands a reshape at the global institutional level in terms of structure. The Security Council can no run on the same way that before and is it the role of Russia the one that acquires new perspectives in the sense that despite all nationalist focus it becomes “less nationalist” than the US, keeping a global mindset.
A successful new global order demands a new structure based on a different axis of power that acts together in a “healthy isolationism” but with a sense of a global world: stable and within certainty for actions that benefits all.
Creating a global power that works as a counterbalanced system means moving forward from Cold War times and enter a new era for whom is precisely Russia the one that pushes for global answers within a predominant role but not alone, from the integration of emerging economies within BRICS.
To become truly resilient is it much better to work within a global mindset than with a nationalist perspective, is it so that the European Union must consider building solid bridges with BRICS. The common argument against this is the fracture that remains among the countries’ members, however, is it not necessarily a weakness but a feature of current times of pandemics and fragility rather than a burden to negotiate spaces.
The same situation is happening with the European Union, in a zero-sum game that is making any advance for an “even closer union” a complete failure. To look at the European project -mainly about cohesion- out of the context of pandemics makes them unreliable. It´s key to be focused on creating synergies rather than the ambition of creating a supranational project –at least for this period of time-. Many of the criticisms are because is not delivering, and this is also about lack of action and too many high expectations on a real cohesion among the countries. The centralised Brussels not only needs to become open and innovative in terms of strategy but also towards countries out of the EU, particularly with blocks of Nations.
Different is the reality with Mercosur, that in the end is submitted to the big partner Brazil -that has a double dimension by being part of both blocks-. Is not the same to negotiate spaces or just dialogue with them than to establish a solid relationship of exchange. Is it possible with BRICS and the differences related to Russia approach in the Balkans is it not enough reason not to have them on board, including the fact that is a member of the UN Security Council that make them a powerful partner, and the perfect counterbalance for the new US that is moving differently than in the past -concerning create bridges with Europe-. Most of the action that the US deployed in the Middle East is equal in terms of Human Rights violations to Russia in the Balkans. To keep the balance we need to think beyond and that means simply to work with those Nations that joint efforts and minds into a global perspective for the future.
A counterbalanced system will come from a global focus, therefore able to work towards finding solutions by achieving local sustainable development within a solid connection and interconnection at the global level. Is it for this crucial difference that global institutions are called to be changed and adapt to the current challenges.
In a global world, homogeneity on political decisions is a utopia that only can be overcome by giving more power to each country individually, although within a strong accountability system. The better approach is by blocks, instead of a centralised structure as United Nations that tend to become no effective because it lacks power over the countries or/and support to do so.
All BRICS members belong to the G20 group that accounts for 80% of world trade, 60% population, and 75% global trade (including the European Union intra-trade). That is the main reason that encourages us to focus on partnerships with the EU, beyond individual relationships. Is not just about Russia-EU or China-EU with all the contradictions that suppose at a politically ideological level, but EU-BRICS. A strategic partnership beyond pandemics as a response for a troublesome and inconsistent historical relation with US., particularly exposure with NATO. A partnership that is failing on its essence, and reason for being.
Both, BRICS and the US are going through internal complexities that turn their political process into weak and highly fragile. Although, and in terms of global trade, it not necessarily supposes a negative impact, not so with the US that have already stated their political will to make it part of America’s power instead of contributing to global power.
Is in this sense that I look at BRICS as a driver to change and build a global mindset as it has focused on mainstreaming relations from a global perspective. The pandemics, like all crises, has exposure “real” nationalisms and America is one of those examples, not so with BRICS. As a block it has continued with a steady message on global cohesion despite internal inconsistencies, keeping a foreign affairs agenda that ought to be rescued in terms of a stronger exercise of Diplomacy. Revaluing common interests after COVID19 is a duty and an imperative to move forward in challenging times. The rejection of dialogue from the EU with Russia is not exactly a helpful political move and in any case, it does not make sense for the construction of a global strategic model.
It looks as if different interests rather than the strict defence of Human Rights are at stake.
That Russia is an authoritarian Nation with a hard agenda is an undeniable fact, however, it is not EU attitude that contributes to guarantee Human Rights but to boost an anti-Russia agenda precisely in a historical momentum when the US has widely proven that is not a reliable partner. Middle East chaos has been fed by contradictory policies of financing “rebels” and a steady message of violence –not peacebuilding- against terrorism that in the end, was created by themselves. It also explains the role (also contradictory) of Saudi Arabia from one side counterterrorism partnership with the US, and from another contributing to destabilize the region and gain more power, particularly concerning Yemen.
I hope that the withdrawal of foreign military forces may contribute to peace and let the Middle East lead their process with a sense of ownership and counterbalanced mechanisms of accountability within their codes: religious, cultural, and political.
The EU does not react equally to US- Saudi Arabia-Russia although in all of these countries the vulnerability on the Human Rights system looks evident. A devastating conclusion that exposure there is not the same yardstick for all Nations. I agree that the EU must contribute to a global strategy aligned with the SDGs, however, consistency is the turning point to get into real sustainability and not only a statement of intentions. If the EU defend, condemn and sometimes boycott Nations because of Human Rights violation it should be accountable to all and not to a few ones.
NATO coalition is one of it and is demanding a reshape to gain empowerment by opening their wings to new partnerships and “SDGs lenses”.
The BRICS-European Union is a partnership with the vision for a global strategy beyond pandemics, America’s nationalism, and Russian authoritarianism. Because negotiation is not a concession of Human Rights violation but to keep certain levels of stability without bias or/and discriminatory agendas that give privileges to one country over the other one. Global trade is a key piece of the puzzle of building peace and helps to boost minimum standards of political stability that in the end results in strong interdependences that work as a system on accountability.
Strategic alliances are drivers towards sustainability and are not a coincidence that represents one of the main axes for the SDGs. Resilient alliances demand open-minded political leaders and a sense of moving beyond without ignoring democratic guarantees but with a strong vision for a future based on Diplomacy, negotiation, and a deep and solid interconnection.
* Mar Introini, “Mercosur trapped within their own particular interest! https://thesustainabilityreader.com/2019/06/26/mercosur-eu-trapped-within-their-own-particular-interests/