SOUTH Africa’s International Relations and Cooperation Minister Naledi Pandor says that the BRICS bloc has been focused on discussing greater use of local currencies for trade purposes, rather than replacing the US dollar as the main currency for global trade. Pandor was speaking to the SABC ahead of the 15th BRICS summit, which starts on Tuesday, in Sandton, north of Johannesburg.
She says the discussions around reducing the dollar’s dominance for trade purposes, was to protect other countries from being affected when there’s a sanction imposed on a member of the bloc.
“The key issue that has been discussed is greater use of local currencies for international trade. So, we’ve been less interested in discussing not using the dollar, we don’t, that is a discussion we should be having at this time. But reducing its dominance in all trade matters and it being of such force and effect, that once there’s a sanction unilaterally imposed, all of us are affected. We need to find a model that allows less economic harm particularly to more fragile economies,” says Pandor.
Pandor has dismissed the idea that South Africa’s alliance to the BRICS bloc is harmful for its diplomatic ties with the West. Pandor says that countries have a variety of diplomatic ties.
“I think it’s very wrong, there are many for that exist all over the world and most recently you’ve had the Indo-Pacific alliance, which the US is part of. We don’t see it as hostile to us. You have the quad, where Australia, the UK, come together, the US, so, I think that we don’t see it as hostile to us. These are formations of countries that have shared interest in particular areas,” Pandor added.