The “Non West” Reshapes the Global Economy

While public opinion in Europe and the United States is lectured on the need to wage war against Russia (and China), and to accept a slash in living standards in order to defend “democracy” and “save the planet”, a new paradigm of cooperation and growth is taking hold in the rest of the world. It was aptly addressed by the president of the New Development Bank (NDB) and former President of Brazil, Dilma Rousseff, at the 10th Arab-China Business Conference on June 12 in Riyadh. She asserted that there is a process underway in the Global South “towards reshaping the global economy and reducing dependency on a single currency”, and that such an initiative “requires cooperation among countries, financial institutions and collaborative policies and organizations such as the Belt and Road Initiative, the New Development Bank [founded by the BRICS] and the Islamic Development Bank, to give a few examples”.

Three days earlier, Dilma Rousseff had been even more explicit in a discussion in Shanghai with the visiting President of Honduras, Xiomara Castro: “NDB’s strategic goal is to become the leading bank for emerging markets and developing countries, and with the expansion of its membership, NDB aims to bolster its role as a platform for wider collaboration between developing countries”.

There is, in fact, a new international development architecture taking shape, opposed to the neo-liberal system, which is crashing, for which the upcoming August 22-24 summit of the BRICS nations in Johannesburg, South Africa could well be a decisive inflection point. Nearly 20 countries have so far asked to join the BRICS Plus, including Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Algeria and the United Arab Emirates in the Arab world, and other heavyweights among emerging countries (cf. below).

A key aspect of the new financial architecture would involve de-dollarization, with the use of local or regional currencies in international trade, or a new currency still to be created. The question brought up by Kenyan President William Ruto on June 11 is being asked by a growing number of world leaders: “Traders from Djibouti selling to Kenya, or traders from Kenya selling to Djibouti, have to look for U.S. dollars…. Why is it necessary for us to buy things from Djibouti and pay in dollars? Why? There is no reason!” He went on to support the Pan-African Payment and Settlement System under the Africa ExIm Bank.

The new system, provided it is based on development of the real economy and promotion of the general welfare, rather than the current speculative financial casino, will put Wall Street and the City of London out of business. And it is the demise of that system which is the cause of the continuing escalation in the Ukraine theater, and of the growing threats against China.

These issues will be discussed at the upcoming in-person conference of the Schiller Institute in Europe on July 8-9, to be held under the banner: “On the Verge of a New World War: European Nations Must Cooperate with the Global South!

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