PH drops in 2017 world corruption rankings

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Bangladesh was ranked the most corrupt country in the world when it was first included in the index in 2001.

The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) has expressed shock and bafflement over the drop in Malaysia's ranking in the latest Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) released by global anti-corruption body Transparency International (TI). Last year, it was ranked 113th out of 176 countries and territories with a score 33, an improvement from 31 in 2012. Every group concentrates on a specific aspect of corruption in a given society, with the result providing an assessment of the level of corruption in the public sector and in politics as perceived by external experts and businesses.

Singapore was ranked as the least corrupt country in the Political and Economic Risk Consultancy's 2017 Report on Corruption in Asia - a position it has held since 1995. "These countries score high for corruption and have fewer press freedoms and higher numbers of journalist deaths", the report added.

Western Europe was named as the best-performing region with an average score of 66, while Sub-Saharan Africa (average score 32), Eastern Europe and Central Asia (average score 34) were the worst- performing regions.

The country's corruption crackdown intensified a year ago, with scores of businesspeople and former government officials jailed, a factor that boosted consumer optimism for 2018, according to a Financial Times survey.

Analysis from Transparency International also showed that the countries with the least protection for mass media and non-governmental organizations also tend to have the worst rates of corruption.

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The world's most corruption free country is New Zealand while Denmark is in second position. Somalia is last, with a score of 9, followed by South Sudan (12) and Syria (14).

One of the campaign promises of then presidential candidate Rodrigo Duterte was to eradicate corruption in the country. The index for a year ago is based on 13 surveys covering expert assessments and views of business people.

"More corruption correlates with less respect for civil liberties, for rule of law, for access to justice", Transparency International chief Delia Ferreira Rubio said.

Transparency found that nearly all journalists killed since 2012 were killed in corrupt countries.

The report made recommendations for all states scoring less than 45 on the index, calling on governments to promote laws on freedom of information, reduce media regulation and increase their own transparency through proactive disclosure of information in the public interest.

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