News Column

Global Corruption Increasing, Survey Finds

July 9, 2013

A majority of people worldwide believe that corruption has worsened, with more than one in four admitting to having paid a bribe during the past 12 months, the corruption watchdog Transparency International said in a report Tuesday.

"Bribe paying levels remain very high worldwide, but people believe they have the power to stop corruption and the number of those willing to combat the abuse of power, secret dealings and bribery is significant," said Transparency chief Huguette Labelle.

Underlying how widespread corruption has become, the group's global corruption barometer revealed that 27 per cent of respondents had paid a bribe when accessing public services and institutions in the last year.

More than one person in two thinks corruption has worsened in the last two years, according to the survey.

Based on responses from 114,000 people in 107 countries, the survey shows that people living in poorer nations are twice as likely to have to pay a bribe as those in richer countries.

But the report has also found that nearly 9 out of 10 people surveyed would act against corruption, and that two-thirds of those who were asked to pay a bribe had refused.

"Governments need to take this cry against corruption from their citizenry seriously and respond with concrete action to elevate transparency and accountability," she said.

"Strong leadership is needed from the Group of 20 governments in particular."

In 17 of the G20 countries surveyed, 59 per cent of respondents said their government was not doing a good job of fighting corruption.

Transparency's survey of public attitudes to corruption, which was last undertaken in 2010, also found that political parties are seen as the most corrupt institutions in 51 countries.

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Source: Copyright 2013 dpa Deutsche Presse-Agentur GmbH

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