In this edition of U-talk, Stéphane from Paris asked: “Despite the crisis, emerging markets seem to be coping better than others. This is apparently the case for BRICS countries whose 6th summit is to be held in Brazil in July 2014. But who are these BRICS countries?”
Guntram B. Wolff from the Centre of Economic Research in Brussels replied: “The BRICS countries are, so far, a loose association consisting of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.
“Their size has grown tremendously in the last 10 years; their GDP has actually increased massively while at the same time their debt ratios – and the debt ratios of emerging markets in general – have actually fallen. And so this puts them very much in contrast to the advanced and developed countries which have actually increasing debt levels and even lower GDP growth than previously.
So in a sense we’re seeing here a real shift from the advanced economies to the emerging economies (the BRICS countries) with the latter really increasing in strength, being much more economically powerful than the advanced economies.
“Their growth is due to their very different levels of development, they’re still catching up. They also still have very young people, so very different demographies and they’re very hungry for growth, new jobs, new opportunities.