Every year Transparency International puts out a Corruption Perceptions Index ranking each country’s corruption level. The index is constructed from a survey of various resident and non-resident country experts as well as business leaders (see methodology here). The 2006 Corruption Perceptions Index gives us one clear conclusion: there is a lot of corruption in the world. The World Bank claims that over $1 trillion are paid in bribes each year.
On the Marketplace Morning Report, a Transparency International worker Nancy Boswell claimed that infrastructure projects such as bridges and power stations are often used by corrupt leaders to embezzle funds.
Nancy Boswell: “Those programs are of such magnitude that they afford a better opportunity for major bribes. And so many leaders may go for an infrastructure project rather than smaller projects for education and health. “
Where did the U.S. place in the rankings? They were the 20th least corrupt country in the world out of the 163 surveyed.
Least Corrupt Countries: Finland, Iceland New Zealand, Denmark, Singapore
Most Corrupt Countries: Haiti, Myanmar, Iraq, Guinea, Sudan