Corruption Perceptions Index 2017 (Important) (Download PDF)


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Based on expert opinion from around the world, the Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) measures the perceived levels of public sector corruption worldwide, released by Berlin-based non-government organisation Transparency International (TI). The CPI uses a scale of zero (highly corrupt) to 100 (very clean). India ranks 81 in the index.

Image of Corruption Perceptions Index - 2017

Image of Corruption Perceptions Index - 2017

Image of Corruption Perceptions Index - 2017

India’s Performance

  • The Corruption Perception Index 2017 also singled out India as one of the “worst offenders” in the Asia-Pacific region.

  • In 2016, India was in the 79th place among 176 countries. India’s ranking in the index had plummeted in 2013 and 2014 in the wake of the spectrum and coal scams. The ranking has improved since then, but seems to be showing signs of weakening.

  • Philippines, India, and the Maldives are among the worst regional offenders in this respect

Performance of Different Countries

  • China has improved its perception about fighting corruption, scoring 41 in 2017 against 40 in 2016. China is ranked 77 on corruption perceptions index 2017.

  • Of the 180 countries assessed in the 2017 index, more than two-thirds score below 50 with an average score of 43. This means over six billion people live in countries that are corrupt.

  • No country had a perfect score. Many less corrupt countries suffer from opaque decision-making, harbor illicit menace, or have weak law enforcement.

  • Despite attempts to combat corruption around the world, the majority of countries are moving too slowly in their efforts.

  • In the last six years, many countries have made little to no progress.

  • The index was topped by New Zealand once again with a score of 89 while Denmark followed closely securing 88 out of 100.

  • Over the last six years, countries with significant increase in CPI score are, Cote d’Ivoire (Ivory Coast), Senegal and the United Kingdom, while countries whose CPI score decreased include Syria, Yemen and Australia.

  • In 2017, New Zealand and Denmark rank highest with scores of 89 and 88 respectively. Syria, South Sudan and Somalia rank lowest with scores of 14, 12 and 9 respectively. The best performing region is Western Europe with an average score of 66. The worst performing regions are Sub-Saharan Africa (average score 32) and Eastern Europe and Central Asia (average score 34).

Relationship between Corruption Levels, the Protection of Journalistic Freedoms and Engagement of Civil Society

  • Further analysis of the index results indicate that countries with the lowest protections for press and non-governmental organisations (NGOs) have the worst rates of corruption.

  • Analysis of the index results by Transparency International further examined the relationship between corruption levels, the protection of journalistic freedoms and engagement of civil society. It found that almost all journalists killed since 2012 were killed in corrupt countries.

  • The analysis, which incorporates data from the Committee to Protect Journalists, shows that in the last six years, more than 9 out of 10 journalists were killed in countries that score 45 or less on the Corruption Perceptions Index.

  • On average, every week at least one journalist is killed in a country that is highly corrupt. One in five journalists that died were covering a story about corruption.

  • The efforts of Transparency International and its first-hand experience working with more than 100 chapters worldwide confirm close linkages between corruption and freedom of the press. For example, in Brazil, which scored 37 on this year’s index, 20 journalists died in the last six years. Targeted for their investigations into local-government corruption and drug-related crime, among other issues, reporters in Brazil risk their lives everyday by simply doing their jobs.

Corruption Linked to Shrinking Space for Civil Society

  • Transparency International also looked at the relationship between corruption levels and the freedom with which civic organisations are able to operate and influence public policy.

  • The analysis, which incorporates data from the World Justice Project, shows that most countries that score low for civil liberties also tend to score high for corruption.

  • Hungary, which saw a ten-point decrease in the index over the last six years, moving from 55 in 2012 to 45 in 2017, is one of the most alarming examples of shrinking civil society space in Eastern Europe.

  • If enacted, recent draft legislation in Hungary threatens to restrict NGOs and revoke their charitable status. This would have disastrous implications for many civil society groups already experiencing the constraining effects of a previous law that stigmatizes NGOs based on their funding structures.

High Levels of Corruption Also Correlate with

  • Attack on press freedom

  • reduction of space for civil society organizations

  • Weak rule of law

  • Lack of access to information

  • Governmental control over social media

  • Reduced citizens’ participation.

Actions to Be Taken by Governments

The vital steps to be taken to fight global fight against corruption Governments around the world must do more to serve their citizens like

  • Engage civil society

  • Support free press

  • Protect activists and journalists

  • Ensure transparency and accountability in public and private sectors.

Steps Taken by Indian Government

The steps include

  • Right to Information Act

  • Inclusion of integrity pact in major purchases

  • Ratification of United Nations Convention against corruption

  • Placing of assets of government officers in public domain

  • Setting up of additional special CBI courts

  • Introduction of e-governance and direct benefit scheme

About the Corruptions Perceptions Index

  • Since its inception in 1995, the Corruption Perceptions Index, Transparency International’s flagship publication, is the leading global indicator of public sector corruption.
  • The index offers an annual snapshot of the relative degree of corruption by ranking countries from all over the globe.

- Published/Last Modified on: July 24, 2018

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