June 24, 2014
There is a consensus in the literature that India–Brazil–South Africa (IBSA) Forum is not about trade. The main argument is that the three economies do not have enough complementarities to foster trade and that their cooperation in trade issues is undermined by competition for developed countries’ markets access. This report shows that this argument does not hold. Not only there are potential gains from trade among India, Brazil and South Africa, but also their exports are not sufficient similar to affirm that they are essentially rivals concerning market access. Moreover, it discusses the potential political gains that an increased trade among IBSA members can bring about. More trade can increase cooperation in multilateral negotiations and helps to sustain the coalition of developing countries.