Corruption Perceptions Index of 2018 has been revealed by Transparency International and it shows, unfortunately, the continued failure of most countries to “significantly control corruption is contributing to a crisis in democracy around the world”.
“Corruption chips away at democracy to produce a vicious cycle, where corruption undermines democratic institutions and, in turn, weak institutions are less able to control corruption”points Patricia Moreira, the Managing Director of Transparency International.
The index, which ranks 180 countries and territories by their perceived levels of public sector corruption according to experts and businesspeople, uses a scale of zero to 100, where zero is highly corrupt and 100 is very clean.
More than two-thirds of countries score below 50 on this year’s CPI, with an average score of just 43.
While there are exceptions, the data shows that despite some progress, most countries are failing to make serious inroads against corruption.
Afghanistan had a score of 16, better than last year’s, the findings note. But there is still a long way to go as in the Asia Pacific region, it is ahead of only North Korea whose score is 15.
Why is Asia Pacific making little to no progress in its anti-corruption efforts? TI answers “One of the reasons is an overall weakening of democratic institutions and political rights”.
It is also noted that well performing countries like New Zealand and Australia have well functioning democracies, which helps in their score. Thus, “the erosion of democratic foundations is stifling anti-corruption efforts across the region”.
The top countries are Denmark and New Zealand with scores of 88 and 87, respectively. The bottom countries are Somalia, Syria and South Sudan with scores of 10, 13 and 13, respectively.