A file photo of Brics leaders during a summit - (Reuters)
Iran is looking to join the Brics nations in order to subvert US-imposed sanctions which have been crippling the country's oil-based economy.
Iran, which continues to enjoy a relatively cosy relationship with the Brics countries - Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa - despite a severe economic clampdown, has been scouting for opportunities across the world in order to boost its oil resources, the nerve-centre of the country's economy.
"Iran supports the Brics group and is prepared for membership and presence in Brics's fund," said Iran's Deputy Economy Minister Behrouz Alishiri.
Alishiri was speaking shortly after a bilateral meeting with his Brazilian counterpart. Senior figures from both countries were holding talks on the sidelines of the annual meeting of the World Bank Group and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in Washington.
Defying the US over the sanctions, the Brics group was also seen as favourable towards Iran over the latter's contentious nuclear programme.
During the latest Brics summit in March 2013, the group voiced concern over Washington's stance on Iran's nuclear activities.
"We are concerned about threats of military action as well as unilateral sanctions, and hope that all outstanding issues relating to Iran's nuclear programme will be resolved through discussions and diplomatic means. We believe there is no alternative to a negotiated solution to the Iranian nuclear issue, and recognize Iran's right to peaceful uses of nuclear energy consistent with its international obligations," the Brics leaders said after the summit.
Given Iran's close ties with Brics nations, its possible membership of the group has the potential to recalibrate political equations across continents, more so because Iran is under the new moderate leadership of Hassan Rohani.
Among the Brics nations, Iran also enjoys a warm relationship with India despite recent hiccups over oil exports.
As with many other Latin American nations, Iran's ties with Brazil are also quite strong.
Besides, Iran and Russia have nuclear agreements as Moscow remains a staunch supporter of Tehran's right to enrich uranium for peaceful purposes.
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