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Thailand’s Ambition to Join BRICS: Foreign Minister Maris Sangiampongsa’s Vision for a Global Role

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Foreign Affairs Minister Maris Sangiampongsa recently delivered a compelling statement at a notable meeting of BRICS foreign ministers in Nizhny Novgorod, Russia. With the picturesque Russian city as the backdrop, Thailand’s aspirations took center stage. The occasion was marked by Minister Maris articulating Thailand’s ambitions to join the powerful BRICS bloc. “Thailand values our collaboration with BRICS and has consistently participated in all high-level BRICS meetings. Indeed, we seek to engage even more comprehensively within the BRICS framework in the future,” he emphasized with conviction.

In his emphatic declaration, Mr. Maris expressed Thailand’s earnest desire to become a BRICS member at the earliest opportunity. The BRICS group, an acronym encapsulating the major emerging economies of Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa, was originally conceived in 2009 with the vision of countering Western dominance. The group has since expanded to include Egypt, Ethiopia, Iran, and the United Arab Emirates, who joined the group on January 1.

This year, interest in the bloc has surged, with 30 nations signaling their eagerness to join and 15 countries, including Kuwait, Thailand, and Vietnam, submitting formal applications. Non-member countries with ambitions to join have been extended an invitation to bag a seat at the 16th BRICS summit, scheduled to be held in Kazan, Russia, from October 22 to 24.

In laying out Thailand’s potential contributions to the vibrant group, Mr. Maris painted a picture of a country brimming with opportunities. He highlighted Thailand’s role as a bridge builder capable of connecting the bloc across various regional, sub-regional, and multilateral frameworks. These include the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean), the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC), the Asia Cooperation Dialogue (ACD), and the Group of 77.

Mr. Maris further proposed that BRICS should ramp up its collaboration with developing nations in areas vital for growth and stability. He called for deeper cooperation in food and energy security, enhanced trade, and investment by streamlining supply-chain connectivity and fostering cross-border digital transactions. Additionally, he advocated for the use of local currencies to promote financial independence.

“Thailand is poised to initiate concrete technical cooperation with BRICS countries, focusing on key areas of human security: health, jobs, food, environment, and energy,” Mr. Maris asserted. His vision for Thailand’s role within BRICS goes beyond mere membership; it’s about being a catalyst for positive change.

Reiterating Thailand’s commitment, Mr. Maris said the inclusion of new members into BRICS will amplify the bloc’s influence and coherence on the global stage. “Thailand builds bridges, we connect, and we cooperate across regions and platforms,” he stated. “As part of the BRICS family, I am certain that this is how Thailand can contribute to making BRICS more inclusive, more interconnected, and more impactful in shaping an emerging world order that is just, stable, and prosperous for all.”

Thailand’s ambitions don’t stop at BRICS. The country has also expressed an interest in joining the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), which unites 38 of the world’s most developed economies. With such strategic aspirations, Thailand is positioning itself as a key player on the international stage, adeptly navigating through various global platforms to secure a spot among the world’s leading and emerging economies.


  1. grower134 June 12, 2024

    Thailand joining BRICS seems like a great move! It’s about time Southeast Asia gets more representation among the emerging global powers.

    • Joe June 12, 2024

      Not so fast. BRICS has always had trouble with cohesive policy-making. Adding more members might just complicate things further.

      • Anne P June 12, 2024

        Joe, diversity can also bring new ideas and perspectives. Thailand could contribute in meaningful ways, especially given their bridging role.

        • grower134 June 12, 2024

          Exactly! Thailand’s regional connections could help unify the bloc in areas like trade and energy security.

    • Davis L June 12, 2024

      Honestly, I think BRICS is just a platform for these countries to posture against the West. Thailand aligning itself with them might not be the smartest move.

      • Samantha June 12, 2024

        Davis, Thailand could use this opportunity to strengthen its own economy. The potential collaborations in tech and infrastructure can’t be ignored.

      • Joe June 12, 2024

        True, but the alignment could make traditional allies like the U.S. uneasy. Geopolitics is a delicate game.

  2. Emily R June 12, 2024

    This is all about economic strategy. Thailand is leveraging every possible avenue to ensure growth and stability for its people.

  3. MarkO June 12, 2024

    Do we really need another country in BRICS? Thailand’s inclusion seems more like a vanity project for its leaders.

    • Steven B June 12, 2024

      MarkO, don’t underestimate the strategic importance of Thailand in global trade routes and regional politics.

    • grower134 June 12, 2024

      Agreed, Steven. Thailand has a lot to offer in terms of trade and connectivity, and its location is critical.

  4. penguin_fan June 12, 2024

    I just hope this doesn’t lead to increased regional tensions. BRICS members have had their share of disagreements.

  5. Aliya J June 12, 2024

    This could either be a brilliant move or a disaster. If Thailand plays its cards right, it’ll definitely benefit from closer ties with BRICS.

  6. Luca M June 12, 2024

    Thailand is looking out for itself, trying to diversify its options. Can’t blame them for wanting to join both BRICS and the OECD.

    • Henry K June 12, 2024

      You’re right, Luca. Diversification is key in today’s global economy. They’re being smart.

    • Emily R June 12, 2024

      Indeed, a diversified approach can provide a safety net. There’s nothing wrong with securing multiple avenues for growth.

  7. Amber June 12, 2024

    What about the impact on local industries? Will aligning with BRICS be beneficial or detrimental to small businesses in Thailand?

    • Anne P June 12, 2024

      That’s a valid concern, Amber. However, with proper policies, Thailand can use this as a stepping stone for local industry growth.

    • grower134 June 12, 2024

      Small businesses could benefit from increased trade opportunities and better access to new markets.

    • Amber June 12, 2024

      I just hope the focus on big international collaborations doesn’t come at the cost of supporting local enterprises.

  8. frank_thinker June 12, 2024

    Seeing non-Western countries banding together like this is refreshing. Why should the West have all the influence?

    • Joe June 12, 2024

      Well, the West has been dominant for a reason. They need to prove they can do more than just form alliances.

  9. Perez June 12, 2024

    Would joining BRICS change Thailand’s stance in international forums like the UN?

  10. Ashley T. June 12, 2024

    It’s interesting how countries like Thailand are expanding their global roles. But what about the human rights track records of some BRICS members?

    • Emily R June 12, 2024

      That’s a tough one, Ashley. Alliances often come with ethical compromises, unfortunately.

    • Henry K June 12, 2024

      Good point! Bringing these issues to the table could push BRICS to evolve and maybe adopt better practices.

  11. Vanessa June 12, 2024

    Thailand’s ambitions are admirable, but BRICS has its own internal struggles. Adding new members doesn’t always mean stronger alliances.

    • Malcolm June 12, 2024

      Vanessa, you make a valid point, but alliances evolve and adapt. New members can bring fresh energy and perspectives.

    • Vanessa June 12, 2024

      True, Malcolm. If done correctly, this move could indeed inject new life into the bloc.

  12. Carlos D. June 12, 2024

    Thailand’s potential contributions seem substantial. They could really add value through their regional networks.

  13. Ron June 12, 2024

    BRICS was initially a counter to Western dominance. Thailand joining doesn’t seem to shift that balance much.

  14. jenjen June 12, 2024

    What does this mean for Thailand’s traditional allies, though? Will this change their diplomatic relations?

  15. Tom O June 12, 2024

    It seems Thailand is trying to play in both camps — BRICS and OECD. It’s risky but could pay off in the long run.

  16. Anya June 12, 2024

    Thailand’s strategic aspirations are clearly aimed at ensuring long-term stability and growth. A smart move in a volatile global landscape.

  17. zach_attack June 12, 2024

    I’m skeptical. BRICS already has enough challenges. Adding more countries might just create more division.

  18. Davis L June 12, 2024

    I don’t see Thailand being a major player within BRICS. Too many big economies already dominate the conversations.

    • Samantha June 12, 2024

      Every country, no matter its size, can bring unique strengths to the table. It’s about how they leverage their position.

    • Davis L June 12, 2024

      Perhaps. Time will tell how well Thailand integrates and exercises influence within BRICS.

  19. Lucas R June 12, 2024

    This will be a test of Thailand’s diplomatic skills. Balancing relations with the West while fostering ties with BRICS is no small feat.

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