— this post authored by Niall McCarthy
Last week, Transparency International called on governments to urgently introduce deep-rooted systemic reforms to combat corruption and address the growing imbalance of power and wealth around the world.
The Berlin-based lobbying group reported that 69 percent of the 176 countries on its Corruption Perceptions Index scored below 50 on a scale between 0 (perceived as highly corrupt) and 100 (perceived as very clean).
In fact, no country on earth is deemed totally free of corruption. The worst offenders for perceived public sector corruption were Somalia, South Sudan and North Korea. Other nations saw their score tumble significantly over the past year with Brazil a notable example. It experienced several high-profile corruption cases last year including Petrobras and Odebrecht which caused its score to fall significantly. The best performers were Denmark and New Zealand.
Transparency International claims that populism is the wrong solution when it comes to eradicating corruption. It can only be eliminated in countries with high levels of freedom of expression, strong democratic institutions and transparency across the entire political process. That allows civil society and the media to hold those in power accountable for their actions.
This chart shows countries and territories ranked on perceived public sector corruption in 2016.
You will find more statistics at Statista.