In the wake of the recent FIFA scandal, a risk analysis company called Verisk Maplecroft has ranked 198 countries on their prevalence of briberyand corruption.
That ranking also looked at the top 10 oil-producing countries and found that six of them were under serious risk of corruption.
The countries are divided into four risk categories: low, medium, high, and extreme.
Of the top 10 oil-producing countries, Russia, Iraq, Iran, and Mexico all fall into the “extreme risk” category. Saudi Arabia and Kuwait both fall into the “high risk category.”
Verisk Maplecroft identifies corruption as “one of the greatest above ground risks for oil, gas and mining companies.”
According to the World Bank corruption adds an estimated 10% to business costs globally, as Verisk notes. Annually, that equals to about $US1 trillion paid in bribes.
Russia has seen corruption worsen over the last year, falling from 24th in the 2014 ranking to 10th in 2015. The already opaque Russian business environment has become even more secretive due to recent geopolitical issues such as the crisis in Eastern Ukraine and a deteriorating relationship with the US and Europe.
The two biggest economies in Asia — China and India — have also been branded as representing serious risks to investors. In March 2015, a former chairman of PetroChina Ltd., Asia’s biggest oil producer, was charged with abusing his position and taking bribes, which led to large losses of public money. His arrest was part of a spreading anti-corruption crackdown.
The UK based company categorized the United Arab Emirates at medium risk and Canada and the United States at a low risk.
The $US150 million FIFA corruption scandal, also reflects the start of a trend in which anti-corruption measures are becoming more wide-spread, Trevor Slack, legal and regulatory analyst at Verisk Maplecroft, said in a statement.
“Since the downturn, anti-corruption enforcement actions have definitely become more aggressive, particularly by the US, and legislation has become tougher,” he said. “Identifying geographical patterns in corruption and trends in the performance of countries should therefore be an imperative for business.”
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