One thing we try to do here is cover a story from the perspective of various other regions around the world. If all we want is the western mainstream media view, that is easy to access at any time. We think there is value in taking a look at how other parts of the world look at things. With that in mind, here is a recent article about the BRICS that appeared in Aljazeera America. This article is by Fullbright Fellow Micheal Pizzi who claims expertise in the Middle East and writes freelance for Aljazeera America. We'll look at his article and then offer a few comments.
Below are some quotes from this article and then a few comments. While this article is actually written by a freelance writer from New York, we can assume it carries weight in the Middle East since it is being run by Aljazeera America.
"After more than six decades of dictating development policy in much of the emerging world, the Western-led International Monetary Fund and World Bank may soon have some competition."
"The BRICS nations first announced their plans for the bank in March 2013 but struggled to reach an agreement over China’s desire to hold a greater stake in the institution. But a Brazilian government official told Reuters last week that the five members were ready to split funding and control equally, clearing the last major hurdle for a launch in 2016."
"To economists in the developing world, who have long criticized the World Bank and IMF as anathema to the countries they purport to help, the New Development Bank holds tremendous promise. Critics say the West has taken advantage of its monopoly in international lending to wield outsize influence in the economic and political affairs of developing countries, dictating development models that further entrench these countries' subservience to the West."
"When a country applies for cash from the World Bank or IMF, it agrees to a set of structural adjustment policies (SAPs) designed to close budget gaps — measures like cutting domestic spending, ending subsidies or freezing wages. Critics say these programs curtail the development and diversification of a country’s domestic industries in favor of export production to the West. Some have likened the relationship to an iteration of neocolonialism."
"At the same time, the IMF and World Bank have refused to grant the emerging world — the BRICS countries included — greater voting power to reform these institutions, even though emerging economies now contribute substantial funding. As South Africa’s former Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan put it: “The roots of the World Bank and IMF still lie in the post–World War II environment.”
"At least to begin with, the new bank will be only a minor competitor. The BRICS can’t compete with the liquidity of the $755 billion IMF or the 66 years of development experience under the belt of the World Bank. For those reasons, it may not be surprising that the World Bank president himself said he “welcomed” the unprecedented venture, calling the bank a “natural extension of the need for more investment in infrastructure” than the World Bank can provide."