The 15th BRICS Summit took place in Johannesburg, South Africa, from August 22 to 24 of 2023. It happened when there is a perceived relative decline of the United States and its Atlantic allies in the face of the rise of a new hegemon in Asia: China. This international conjuncture, where we see great powers' rise and fall, has profound geopolitical implications characterised below.
The energy outlook is complicated by the drop in demand during confinement, especially for fossil fuels; however, the importance of oil remains crucial. China is the central player for both the global oil industry and the major player in terms of clean energy sources.
Economies such as Colombia, Venezuela, Ecuador and Bolivia are heavily dependent on oil and gas exports; while Mexico and Brazil depend for their tax revenues on the oil companies Pemex and Petrobras.
The panorama shows a dispute between dirty and clean energies in a conjuncture of both energy change and crisis in energy demand. The crisis due to the pandemic may mean a boost to the transition towards cleaner energies under the leadership of China.