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Corruption Perception Index 2020

  • 16 Feb 2021
  • 4 min read

Why in News

India’s rank has slipped six places to 86th among 180 countries in Corruption Perception Index (CPI) released by Transparency International.

  • India was ranked 80th out of 180 countries in 2019.

Transparency International

  • Transparency International is an international non -governmental organisation founded in 1993 based in Berlin, Germany
  • its non profit purpose is to take action to combat global Corruption with civil societal anti-corruption measures and to prevent criminal activities arising from corruption.
  • Its most notable publications include the Global Corruption Barometer and the Corruption Perception Index.

Key Points

  • About:
    • The index ranks 180 countries and territories by the perceived level of public sector corruption according to experts and business people.
    • It uses a scale of zero (highly corrupt) to 100 (very clean).
    • CPI 2020 paints a grim picture of the state of corruption worldwide. While most countries have made little to no progress in tackling corruption in nearly a decade, more than two-thirds of countries score below 50, with an average score of just 43.
    • Moreover, corruption not only undermines the global health response to Cover-19 but contributes to a continuing crisis of democracy.
  • Top Performers:
    • The top countries on the Corruption Perception Index (CPI) are Denmark and New Zealand, with scores of 88, followed by Finland, Singapore, Sweden and Switzerland, with scores of 85 each.
  • Poor Performers:
    • South Sudan and Somalia are the bottom Countries with scores of 12 each, followed by Syria (14), Yemen (15) and Venezuela (15).
  • Regional Specific:
    • The highest scoring region is Western Europe and the European Union with an average score of 66.
    • The lowest scoring regions are Sub-Saharan Africa (32) and Eastern Europe and Central Asia (36).
  • India Specific:
    • In 2020, India's score is 40 (41 in 2019).
    • India experienced slow progress in anti-corruption efforts, with several government commitments to reform not yet materialising effectively.
  • Corruption, Health & Covid-19:
    • Corruption shifts public spending away from essential public services. Countries with higher levels of corruption,regardless of economic development, tend to spend less on health.
      • Higher levels of corruption are associated with lower universal health care coverage and higher rates of infant and maternal mortality and deaths from cancer, diabetes, respiratory and cardiovascular diseases.
    • Corruption is one of the key barriers to achieving the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and the covid-19 pandemic is making those goals even more difficult to attain.
    • Covid-19 is not just a health and economic crisis, but a corruption crisis as well, with countless lives lost due to the insidious effects of corruption undermining a fair and equitable global response.
    • The Covid-19 response exposed vulnerabilities of weak oversight and inadequate transparency. Countries with higher levels of corruption tend to be the worst perpetrators of democratic and rule-of-law breaches while managing the COVID-19 crisis.
      • Governments exploiting the pandemic to suspend parliaments, renounce public accountability mechanisms, and incite violence against dissidents.
  • Recommendations:
    • Strengthen oversight institutions  to ensure resources reach those most in need. Anti-corruption authorities and oversight institutions must  have sufficient funds, resources  and  independence  to perform their duties
    • Ensure open and transparent contracting to combat  wrong doing, identify conflicts of interest and ensure  fair pricing.
    • Defend Democracy, Promote Civic Space by enabling civil society groups and the media to hold governments accountable.
    • Publish relevant data and guarantee access  to information to ensure the public receives easy, accessible, timely and meaningful information.


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