Iran has applied to join the BRICS group of major emerging economies, which includes China, Russia, and India, Reuters reported on Tuesday, a move that would help to secure an alternative alliance to the West. Iran is a major oil and gas resource holder, as is Russia, while China is the world’s top oil importer and one of the biggest gas importers. BRICS, an acronym of its members Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa, is what China and Russia pitch as the emerging markets alternative to the West. The term for the informal group of emerging economies was originally coined in 2001 as “BRIC” by Goldman Sachs economist Jim O’Neill in his report, Building Better Global Economic BRICs. The group in its current form represents 41 percent of the global population, accounts for one-fourth of global GDP, and 16 percent of world trade. Iran has held close ties […]