The summit of the so-called BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa) has closed with an invitation to join the group extended to the Emirates, Egypt, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Argentina, and Ethiopia.
The summit has generated a lot of headlines about the impact of this widespread group of nations, including speculation about the end of the U.S. dollar as a global reserve currency if this group is perceived as a threat to the United States or even the International Monetary Fund.
Several things need to be clarified.
Many political analysts believe that China lends, invests, or supports in return for nothing. China is a major economic power, but it has no interest in being a global reserve currency. Its currency is currently used in only 5% of global transactions, according to the Bank of International Settlements.
China and Russia have capital controls. It is impossible to have a global reserve currency without freedom of capital movement. More requirements are needed than solid gold reserves to have a stable fiat currency. It is essential to guarantee economic freedom, investment, legal security, and the free movement of capital, as well as an open, transparent, and diversified financial system.
China and Russia are much more demanding and rigorous lenders than many politicians think. It seems that some emerging market politicians think that joining China and Russia will be a kind of free money panacea.