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Sustainable development: It's what BRICS craves!

The fifteenth annual BRICS summit was held in late August in Johannesburg, South Africa. Probably you heard about it.

As part of the festivities, member states signed the “Johannesburg II Declaration — BRICS and Africa: Partnership for Mutually Accelerated Growth, Sustainable Development and Inclusive Multilateralism”. (The link directs to an English-language version of the document hosted by

A quick summary:

  • The UN is the cornerstone of the “international system”, and BRICS members are committed to the full “implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.”

  • “Public-private partnerships” will help ensure “sustainable development”, and BRICS is excited about the work of its Task Force on Public-Private Partnership.

  • The IMF and WTO are valued organizations, but they must be more “inclusive” and “non-discriminatory”.

  • “We commit to intensify our efforts towards improving our collective capacity for global pandemic prevention, preparedness, and response, and strengthening our ability to fight back any such pandemics in the future collectively.”

  • BRICS will double-down on clot-shot “research”.

  • “Climate change” is referred to 18 times.

  • BRICS is excited about “digital transformation in education” and “sustainable education”.

  • A lot of other feel-good word salad about making the world a better, more inclusive and sustainable place by partnering with corporations and strengthening global governance.

  • In total, “sustainable development” is mentioned 21 times. (The acronym “SDG” appears 6 times.)

Of course, what makes BRICS special and different is that it promises to carry out a friendly global agenda aimed at crushing your soul in an “integrated and holistic manner”.

Sustainability was the hot topic at this summit. Putin even started his address to the BRICS Business Forum by expressing hope that the “business community” would work towards “accelerated socio-economic growth of our states and achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.”

The Russian president ended his speech by praising BRICS for promoting the “successful achievement of global development goals and targets set by the United Nations.”

De-dollarization was also a major theme of the conference. There has been some noteworthy progress towards dumping the dollar: BRICS’ New Development Bank pledged to increase the share of local currencies in its holdings/dealings. (More on this in a different blog post.)

And these local currencies will be used to achieve Sustainable Development Goals, as the bank helpfully explains on its website.


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