Leadership in BRICS: Forecasts and Reality

DOI: 10.20542/0131-2227-2017-61-5-25-33

Y. Leksyutina (lexyana@ya.ru),
St.Petersburg State University, 7/9 Universitetskaya Emb., St.Petersburg 199034, Russian Federation 

Acknowledgements. The paper was prepared within the framework of research project sponsored by Saint-Petersburg State University, grant no.

Abstract. In 2015, for the first time since the creation of the BRIC acronym in 2001, China demonstrated GDP growth rates lower than the other BRIC/BRICS countries. The fact that India overtook China in terms of GDP growth made headlines around the globe and initiated a discussion in the expert and academic communities over the possibility of India becoming a new economic leader in the BRICS. By examining BRICS countries’ current and expected macroeconomic performance and by specifying roles they play in the international monetary and financial system this article aims to identify actual leading economic force in the BRICS. The focus of the research is put on the question whether India has capacity and strong prospects to replace China as a driver of the BRICS grouping in light of India’s recently improved economic performance. After comparing major macroeconomic indicators of the BRICS countries and revealing challenges that China and India face in the process of economic development and measures both governments undertake to tackle them, it further proceeds with an analysis of roles China and other BRICS countries play in the international monetary and financial system. A cross country comparison for the BRICS countries’ macroeconomic indicators and complex indexes reveals that China continues to be the leading force in this grouping in the economic realm. In terms of global economy agenda setting capacity and decision-making capacity, China is also far ahead of other BRICS countries. The article concludes that India’s recent successful economic development doesn’t provide enough grounds to claim its leadership role in the grouping; it is China that is set to remain the economic leader of the BRICS in the foreseen future. 

Keywords: BRICS, China, India, economic development, macroeconomic performance, economic reforms, GDP, development banks, yuan internationalization 


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For citation:
Leksyutina Y. Leadership in BRICS: Forecasts and Reality. World Eonomy and International Relations, 2017, vol. 61, no. 5, pp. 25-33. https://doi.org/10.20542/0131-2227-2017-61-5-25-33

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