Transparency International: ”ASIA-PACIFIC ANTI-CORRUPTION RANKINGS FOR 2015”

According to Transparency International as reflected in this article, most Corruption Perception Index (CPI) scores for Asia-Pacific did not change much compared to the previous rankings of 2014  despite the general improvement elsewhere.  Countries that showed improvement include Mongolia, India, Myanmar, Thailand, Timor-Lestor, China, Indonesia and South Korea.

Japan dropped 3 places from 15th in 2014 to 18th in 2015.  With the introduction of the Corporate Governance Code and introduction of Independent Directors on Boards in Japan, it is expected that the scores will improve with time. Others that notably dropped include The Phillipines, Malaysia together with New Zealand and Australia which declined by two places though still at the top end.

”The Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) for 2015, published by Transparency International (TI) on January 27, 2016, shows that globally the scores for more countries improved rather than declined, but the scores for Asia-Pacific remained largely static.

Of the 27 Asia-Pacific countries featured in the CPI 2015, only nine achieved a “passing score” of 50, with the other 18 again scoring below 40. This statistic remains the same as in 2014, indicative of a lack of progress in the region.

The CPI is compiled from expert opinions of public sector corruption, based on reviews of 12 different data sources. The CPI scores countries from 0 to 100, where 0 is perceived to be most corrupt, and 100 is perceived to be least corrupt. Using the scores, TI also ranks the countries from those perceived to be the cleanest (Denmark) to those perceived to be the most corrupt (a tie between North Korea and Somalia).

The CPI for 2015 examines the perception of public sector corruption in 168 countries (compared with 175 in 2014). The lower number of countries included in the 2015 CPI makes trend analysis more complicated. Accordingly, companies operating in the region may find that a country’s score is a more accurate indicator of perceived levels of corruption than its relative rankings.

MAJOR CLIMBERS

The major Asia-Pacific climbers in the 2015 CPI ranking include: Mongolia (up eight places); India, Myanmar and Thailand (all up nine places); Timor-Leste (up 10 places); China (up 17 places); and Indonesia (up 19 places).

  • Indonesia’s remarkable rise (from 107th to 88th place) belies the fact that its score actually only improved by two points (from 34 to 36 points). However, the improvement may be testament to the growing prominence of Indonesia’s independent anti-corruption commission, the KPK, and its forging of links with other international anti-corruption agencies through the Jakarta Statement on Principles for Anti-Corruption Agencies (Jakarta Principles).
  • Similarly, China’s ranking rose an equally impressive 17 places (from 100th to 83rd place), although its score improved by only one point (from 36 to 37 points). This rise is nonetheless noteworthy when considered against China’s dramatic fall 20 places in 2014. While the 2014 plunge may have been attributable to increased enforcement activities revealing the full extent of public sector corruption, the 2015 resurgence indicates that China’s well-publicized anti-corruption campaign is having a positive impact on regional and global perception.
  • South Korea’s six-place rise (from 43rd to 37th place) similarly reflects the central government’s efforts to tackle the country’s disparate anti-corruption laws and regulations, with the passing of the comprehensive Anti-Corruption and Conflicts of Interest Act, effective in September 2016.
  • The unreliable effect of comparing this year’s rankings with 2014 is best illustrated by the apparent fortunes of the countries at the bottom end of the table. For instance, Afghanistan’s score worsened by one point, but it nonetheless rose six places in the ranking (from 172nd to 166th place)………..”.

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Source: Corporate Compliance Insights

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