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Argentina's new President Milei: Doesn't want to work with "communists"


The BRICS countries Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, along with five other countries, had only invited Argentina to join on January 1 in August. After the election in the South American country, however, the future foreign minister has now spoken out against admission to the alliance of the most important emerging countries.

"We will not join the BRICS group," Diana Mondino wrote on Platform X, formerly known as Twitter.

Argentina is facing a radical economic restructuring after the clear victory of the right-wing populist Javier Milei in the presidential election in November. During the election campaign, the libertarian politician had announced economic shock therapy for the country, which is struggling with triple-digit inflation rates, economic slump and increasing poverty. The new government is due to be sworn in on 10 December.

China speaks of "grave mistake"

The planned expansion, which China, for example, has been pushing for, is intended to give the emerging economies more global weight internationally. China and Russia, in particular, insist on a counterweight to the West, while Brazil rejects a front position with, for example, the G7 alliance of the most important Western industrialized countries. In addition to Argentina, the BRICS countries had agreed at the summit in Johannesburg, South Africa, on the membership of Egypt, Ethiopia, Iran, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

However, Argentina's new president, Milei, is rethinking relations with the leading emerging economies. The Foreign Ministry in Beijing had therefore recently declared that it would be a "grave mistake" if the South American country were to break off its relations. China is an important trading partner for Argentina, said Foreign Ministry spokesman Mao Ning. He pointed out that the previous government in Buenos Aires had attached great importance to relations with China.

Milei had already distanced himself from China and left-wing Brazil during the election campaign, declaring that he did not want to work with "communists." He also wants to scale back Argentina's previously close relations with Russia and support the government in Kiev in the Ukraine war. In return, he seeks stronger ties with the United States.

Milei's stance thus stands in stark contrast to the position of the center-left government of outgoing President Alberto Fernandez, who described China as Argentina's "true friend" during a visit to Beijing last month.