Sri Lanka Eyes BRICS Membership, Seeks Backing from India

Sri Lanka Eyes BRICS Membership

22nd May 2024

Report : Sri Lanka seeks BRICS entry with India’s support.

Sri Lanka has expressed its strong desire to join the BRICS grouping, a move that could significantly impact the island nation’s economic and diplomatic landscape. Foreign Minister Ali Sabry highlighted the growing influence of BRICS, stating it has become a “good body” particularly since India’s participation.

BRICS, which stands for Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa, has expanded in 2024 to include Egypt, Ethiopia, Iran, and the United Arab Emirates. This expansion reflects the growing importance of emerging economies on the world stage. Sri Lanka believes membership would provide access to a powerful economic bloc and potential for increased trade and investment.

Foreign Minister Sabry emphasized that Sri Lanka would prioritize India’s support in its BRICS application. Sri Lanka is a key partner in India’s “Neighbourhood First Policy” and the “Security and Growth for All in the Region (SAGAR)” maritime security initiative. Cultivating strong ties with India is crucial for Sri Lanka’s economic and strategic interests.

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There are several factors motivating Sri Lanka’s BRICS ambition. The country is facing a challenging economic situation, with rising debt and a depreciating currency. Joining a powerful economic bloc like BRICS could offer access to preferential trade agreements, financial assistance, and potential investment opportunities. Additionally, BRICS nations are increasingly collaborating on infrastructure development projects, a sector where Sri Lanka seeks significant investment.

Sri Lanka’s interest in BRICS also reflects a strategic shift. The global order is undergoing a transformation, with emerging economies playing a more prominent role. BRICS represents a counterweight to traditional Western-dominated institutions and offers a platform for developing nations to advocate for their interests. Sri Lanka’s membership could allow it to have a greater voice on issues like global trade, climate change, and international development.

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However, Sri Lanka’s bid for BRICS membership faces potential hurdles. The process of admitting new members is not clearly defined, and consensus among existing members is required. Some analysts believe that Sri Lanka’s economic size and regional influence might not be on par with other BRICS members. Additionally, the inclusion of several new members in 2024 has already diluted the bloc’s focus and purpose. Sri Lanka will need to demonstrate how its membership would add value to the organization.

India’s stance on Sri Lanka’s application will be crucial. As a founding member and a key player within BRICS, India’s support could significantly improve Sri Lanka’s chances. However, India might have its own strategic considerations and might weigh Sri Lanka’s application against other potential candidates.


Sri Lanka’s desire to join BRICS reflects the growing importance of emerging economies and the evolving global order. While the path to membership is not guaranteed, it signifies Sri Lanka’s aspirations for deeper economic and strategic ties with other developing nations. The ultimate decision by BRICS will depend on its vision for the future and the value proposition Sri Lanka brings to the table.

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