The World’s Most Corrupt Countries

A growing outcry over corrupt governments forced several Arab leaders from office last year.

But as the dust has settled it has become apparent that levels of bribery, abuse of power and secret dealings continue to ravage societies around the world.

Transparency International’s Corruption Perceptions Index 2012 shows how:

[caption id="attachment_1008" align="aligncenter" width="580"]Corruption Perceptions Index 2012 Corruption Perceptions Index 2012[/caption]

Afghanistan clings for a second year to the bottom rung of the index as the most corrupt country in the world, joint with Somalia and North Korea. In these countries the lack of accountable leadership and effective public institutions underscore the need to take a much stronger stance against corruption, Transparency International says.

Though Egypt escapes the extreme end of the corruption list, it still stands at a dismal 118 on the ranking of 174 countries, showing the North African nation still has a long way to go before eradicating an opaque practice seen as a “dirty tax” that mostly affects the poor and the vulnerable.   Like many of the countries featured on the index, Egypt’s ranking has worsened from 112 in 2011.

Among the Arab world’s worst offenders is Sudan, which ranks at 173 (out of 174), Iraq at 169, Libya at 160 and Yemen at 156.

On the other end of the scale, Denmark, New Zealand and Finland share joint first place for the second year in a row.

“Governments need to integrate anti-corruption actions into all public decision-making. Priorities include better rules on lobbying and political financing, making public spending and contracting more transparent and making public bodies more accountable to people,” said Huguette Labelle, the Chair of Transparency International.

“After a year of focus on corruption, we expect governments to take a tougher stance against the abuse of power.” 

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