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September 25, 2008 

Transparency International Releases 2008 Corruption Perceptions Index

Transparency International has released its annual Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) for 2008 that measures the perceived levels of public-sector corruption in countries. The 2008 CPI scores 180 countries (the same number as the 2007 CPI) on a scale from zero (highly corrupt) to ten (highly clean). Transparency International's CPI is a very useful tool for determining the extent and risk of corruption in countries where companies conduct business.

Denmark, New Zealand and Sweden share the highest CPI score at 9.3, followed by Singapore at 9.2. The U.S. is ranked 18th (7.3), tied with Belgium.

Bringing up the rear are Somalia (1.0), Iraq and Myanmar (1.3) and Haiti (1.4). Nigeria and Vietnam are tied at 121 with a CPI score of 2.7.

Countries experiencing significant declines in their CPI score from 2007 to 2008 were Bulgaria, Burundi, Maldives, Norway and the United Kingdom.

Countries that improved their CPI scores from 2007 to 2008 were Albania, Cyprus, Georgia, Mauritius, Nigeria, Oman, Qatar, South Korea, Tonga and Turkey.

According to Transparency International:

The weakening performance of some wealthy exporting countries, with notable European decliners in the 2008 CPI, casts a further critical light on government commitment to reign in the questionable methods of their companies in acquiring and managing overseas business, in addition to domestic concerns about issues such as the role of money in politics. The continuing emergence of foreign bribery scandals indicates a broader failure by the world’s wealthiest countries to live up to the promise of mutual accountability in the fight against corruption.
Transparency International's 2008 Corruption Perceptions Index can be found here (pdf).




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