Plans by the leaders of BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) to approve a new development bank to compete with the existing Bretton Woods institutions such as the World Bank and the International Monetray Fund are welcome in a new and possible multilateral order. BRICS members are reportedly toying with the idea an equal $10 billion towards a development bank geared towards the needs of developing countries.
This initiative if successful will become a key launch pad towards achieving the much needed reform in the international financial system. The ongoing financial woes in the Eurozone are just but one pointer to the need to reform global financial systems. Pronouncements to initiate the bank will just be one step, but the real work is to have economic productivity in member countries especially South Africa scaled up. African countries too have to scale up their economic productivity and participation in global trade in order to contribute in the long run to this initiative. BRICS bank can be a game changer in the global balance of power.