August 18th, 2011
08:45 AM GMT
(CNN) – With people in the streets of India in support of graft-buster Anna Hazare, where does India rank among the world’s major economies in terms of corruption?
Moreover, is there a correlation between strong economies and good transparency?
1) U.S. – 22 (out of 178 nations)
2) China – 78
3) Japan – 17
4) Germany – 15
5) France –25
6) UK – 20
7) Brazil – 69
8) Italy – 67
9) Canada – 6
10) India – 87
Only Canada, the ninth largest economy, ranks in the top 10 in terms of transparency among 178 nations listed on the corruption perceptions index, with an 8.9 score on a scale of 10 (very clean) to 0 (highly corrupt). Denmark, New Zealand and Singapore tied for the top spot with a 9.3 score.
At the basement for global transparency are Somalia, Myanmar, Afghanistan and Iraq.
The index measures nations based on perceptions of public sector corruption. As Transparency International explains, corruption “is to a great extent a hidden activity that is difficult to measure.”
India registered among countries reporting the highest petty bribery levels, according to the 2010 Global Corruption Barometer also released by Transparency International, with 54% of respondents reporting paying bribes to a service provider in the last year.
The barometer surveyed more than 91,500 people in 86 countries and territories and found that, worldwide, political parties are judged to be the sector most affected by corruption. Such is the case with all 10 of the world’s largest economies except Communist-ruled China, where business and the private sector ranked as the most corrupt sector, according to the barometer.
According to the World Bank, corruption poses among the greatest obstacles to economic and social development, weakening laws and institutions, with the poor bearing the brunt of the consequences. Trace International, a non-profit group that helps companies fight bribery, says the cost of corruption extends beyond money, noting consequences from water shortages and unsafe medicines to exploitative work conditions and poor construction.
But if estimates are correct, the world’s top 10 economies will soon have a new best worst nation: Russia is expected to overtake India and Canada to become the ninth largest economy this year and ranks 154th of 178 nations on the corruption perception index – alongside Cambodia, Central African Republic, Comoros, Congo-Brazzaville, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Laos, Papua New Guinea and Tajikistan. Only 15 nations rank worse.
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