THE DARK SIDE OF THE BRICS: THE LACK OF A LEGAL DEFINITION
Authors: Marta Bono
The uniqueness of the BRICS group makes it difficult to define, especially from a legal perspective. The scopes and the levels of cooperation among the member States are so heterogeneous and multifaceted that the BRICS could be analyzed under many lenses. Most of the present-day literature attempts to explain the BRICS phenomenon especially from an economic and\or political perspective, whereas there is a lack of research focused on its legal international dimension. To make things more complicated, the BRICS themselves seem to voluntarily forget about defining the legal foundation of their cooperation. Therefore, the aim of this paper is to shed some light on what we consider a dark side of the BRICS, namely the lack of a legal definition. In order to do so, it becomes extremely important to broaden the understanding of the BRICS. The paper thus begins with a brief introduction retracing the historical steps that have led to the BRICS as we currently know it, also describing the decision-making process employed in the BRICS cooperation style. With this overall picture in mind, the paper investigates how the BRICS qualifies within the international law, assessing whether it could be classified as international organization, and whether it is a global\international actor with legal personality\legal capacity. Finally, the paper reviews some of the definitions given by prominent scholars of BRICS, in the search for an agreeable legal definition that is capable of capturing the real essence of the group.
Keywords: BRICS - International law - International cooperation - Global South, - Legal definition, - Ios - Multipolarity.