Fighting corruption – a new utopia?

Wed 25 Jan 2017

Fighting corruption – a new utopia?

On 25 January Transparency International (TI) published its Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) 2016, according to which every single country in the world is corrupt. Out of 100 points that indicate a very corruption-free result, the global average is 43 – way below the middle bar. TI highlights the dependence of corruption on inequality. Unequal distribution of wealth and power feeds corruption and populism. Last year’s CPI serves as a reminder that equality still remains to be achieved.

Eastern Europe

Even though there were no major changes in Eastern Europe as regards to CPI scores – fight against corruption didn’t improve there and remains one of the contributing factors to disappointment in politics. Georgia rose far above the middle bar with the score of 57 and place 44 (the same as Latvia). Belarus demonstrated a great improvement in CPI score last year: from 32 in 2015 to 40, and shares place 79 with Brazil, China and India. Armenia scored two points less last year than in 2015, which brings it to place 113 out of 176 (together with Bolivia and Vietnam). Azerbaijan and Moldova are in place 123 (together with Djibouti, Honduras, Laos, Mexico, Paraguay and Sierra Leone). In Azerbaijan the situation has been steadily improving per one score point since 2012, whereas in Moldova it has been worsening from 36 in 2012 to 30 in 2016. Russia, Kazakhstan and Ukraine share place 131 (together with Iran and Nepal) with a slightly better score of 29 as compared to the previous CPIs. Kyrgyzstan finds itself in place 136 with the same score as in 2015 – 28 (together with Guatemala, Myanmar, Nigeria and Papua New Guinea). Tajikistan is in place 151 (sharing with Uganda) with a slight decline per one point from 26 in 2015 – to 25. Turkmenistan got to place 154 (next to Zimbabwe) with a score of 22, as compared to 18 in 2015. Uzbekistan closes the list of Eastern European countries: it went up from 19 to 21 in 2016 and is in place 156.  

 South Eastern Europe

In Western Balkans, due to the fact that politicians have the opportunity to capture political systems while relying on rich businessmen and organized crime network, the law enforcement system remains weak and cases of corruption go unpunished. Montenegro went up slightly to place 64 (together with Oman, Senegal, South Africa and Suriname) with a score of 45. After getting back to its 2013 score of 42, Serbia finds itself in place 72 (with Burkina Faso and Solomon Islands). Turkey follows in place 75 (similar to Bulgaria and Kuwait) with a steady decrease to score 41. Albania and Bosnia-Herzegovina are in place 83 (together with Jamaica and Lesotho) with an improved score of 39. Macedonia went down to place 90 (sharing with Colombia, Indonesia and Liberia) due to CPI worsening from 42 to 37 in 2016. Kosovo rose to place 95 (the same as Argentina, Benin, El Salvador, Maldives and Sri Lanka) and improved its CPI score from 33 to 36 after preserving status quo for three years in a row.

Middle East and North Africa (MENA)

All MENA countries scored below 50 indicating the failure to fight corruption and building democratic systems following the will of the ‘Arab Spring’. It’s undeniable that war and conflict fuel political corruption in these countries. Jordan demonstrated the best result among the Middle Eastern countries in place 57 (sharing with Hungary and Romania), even though it decreased per five points from 53 to 48. Tunisia rose to place 75 with a better result of 41, compared to 38 in 2015. TI experts say that Tunisia did well with adopting a progressive law on Access to Information and allowing the civil society to play a role in accountability executed by the Anti-Corruption Agency. Morocco showed a slight improvement from 36 to 37 running up in place 90. Algeria and Egypt find themselves in place 108 (next to Cote d’Ivoire, Ethiopia and Guyana) after both declining per two points from 36 to 34. Lebanon remained in place 136 with its CPI score of 28. Iraq is among ten most corrupt countries in the world, in place 166 (together with Venezuela) with a somewhat improved result of 17, as compared to 16 between 2013 – 2015.

Source: Transparency International