The 12 Most Corrupt Countries In The World

afghanistanTagab, Afghanistan

Photo: ISAF media

It’s clear that corrupt activities by individuals and governments – to the tune of trillions per year – have a huge impact on the world economy.But since corruption generally involves illegal activities that are hidden until exposed, it’s very difficult to assess a country’s societal or private sector corruption.

Transparency International’s 2012 Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) does the next best thing by ranking countries and territories based on how corrupt their administrative and political institutions are perceived to be on a scale from 0 (highly corrupt) and a 100 (very clean).

Based on a combination of surveys and assessments of “the abuse of entrusted power for private gain,” the CPI is the most widely used indicator of corruption worldwide. 

Chad is both one of the poorest and most corrupt nations in the world

Chad ranks 165 out of 174 countries and earned a score of 19 out of 100.

Two watchdogs said that the oil pipeline running from Chad to Cameroon that generates more than a billion dollars annually for the Chadian government is an example of World Bank and International Monetary Fund failures to foster 'fundamental measures of transparency in the oil, gas and mining industries.'

Chad had promised to dedicate revenue from oil to social spending but has instead spent it on weapons, and lenders failed to insist on transparency in the Chadian government.

In November the mayor of the capital of N'Djamena was arrested and 'suspended from duty' for 'forgery and attempted embezzlement and corruption.'

Source: Transparency International

Burundi's stability is constantly threatened by corrupt officials

Burundi ranks 165 out of 174 countries and earned a score of 19 out of 100.

Many hoped that a 2005 rebellion would stem corruption, but the landlocked east African nation is facing 'a deepening corruption crisis that jeopardizes prospects for lasting peace and stability,' according to The International Crisis Group.

Political power has transferred from the Tutsi to the Hutu, but corruption scandals involving new diplomats and state officials 'have watered down the hope of a change of governance and a more equitable wealth distribution.'

Source: Transparency International

Haiti has changed its president but it hasn't affected corruption in government

Venezuela has been one of the most corrupt countries since the first CPI in 1995

Iraq is doing more to combat corruption within its ranks but its an uphill battle

Iraq ranks 169 out of 174 countries and earned a score of 18 out of 100.

'Millions of dollars are being stolen, and some of this money is going to terrorist groups,' a former political exile told the BBC in 2009. 'The government cannot win the war against the insurgency if it does not fight corruption first. And the war against corruption is much harder to win.'

The government seems to have made serious efforts since then, but in October a $4.2 billion weapons deal with Russia was canceled -- after being was signed by Prime Minister Noori al-Maliki -- amid corruption concerns on both sides.

Iraq-Business New keeps track of corruption in the country.

Source: Transparency International

Turkmenistan's lack of viable law in allows corruption to reign

Turkmenistan ranks 170 out of 174 countries and earned a score of 17 out of 10.

The poorly developed Turkemi legal system makes the country highly vulnerable to public sector corruption that 'further undermines the already fragile rule of law,' according tot The Heritage Foundation.

Judges are poorly trained and open to bribery while all land is owned by the government and other ownership rights are limited.

Turkmenistan's president can spend revenues from hydrocarbons sales -- the country's primary source of income -- at his discretion while no national budget published in full.

Source: Transparency International

Uzbekistan's closed society leads to an economy that funds the elite

Burma's resources are still controlled by generals despite a transition out of military rule

Southern Sudan became a nation in 2011 but officials steal oil money just like before

Sudan ranks 173 out of 174 countries and earned a score of 13 out of 100.

South Sudan produces half a million barrels per day, and the $10 billion in oil revenues collected since 2005 has funded nearly 98 per cent of the government's budget.

But Africa's youngest nation has lost more than $4 billion due to public sector corruption since gaining self-rule in '05.

And not one official has been prosecuted for corruption, despite there being a commission assigned specifically to the task.

Source: Transparency International

Afghanistan dropped to the bottom after its biggest bank was exposed as a fraud

Afghanistan ranks 174 out of 174 countries and earned a score of 8 out of 10.

Afghanistan fell to the bottom of the rankings after a confidential forensic audit found that Kabul Bank--the country's largest financial institution--functioned as a 'well-concealed Ponzi scheme' from its very beginning.

While the Kabul Bank funneled money to the country's elite, weak oversight of U.S. contracts in the country has fuelled fraud all the way down the political chain.

In one instance intelligence officials traced $3.3 million from an Afghan National Police commander's account to insurgents in the form of weapons, explosives and cash.

Source: Transparency International

North Korea's closed economy leads to rampant public sector bribery

North Korea ranks 174 out of 174 countries and earned a score of 8 out of 100.

There is little foreign investment in North Korea, and the country is plagued by structural corruption in its political and bureaucratic system since the early 1990s when the Stalinist North Korea collapsed

Entering or leaving The Hermit Kingdom requires large bribes. When professor Dr. Andrei Lankov asks North Koreans whether it is conceivable that a police officer or bureaucrat would refuse a bribe, they look confused. One market vendor said: 'Are they crazy? How else would they stay alive?'

Source: Transparency International

Somalia is a mess of clans, warlords, pirates and government militias

Somalia ranks 174 out of 174 countries and earned a score of 8 out of 100.

Over the years foreign countries -- primarily the U.S. and USSR -- used Somalia as a battleground for political ideologies and fuelled corruption by backing particular clans or groups.

U.S. funding really helped the Siad Barre regime, which really took government corruption to the next level. After the regime fled in 1991, the country is essentially lawless and ruled by clans, warlords and militia groups.

A 2012 World Bank report alleged that about $130 million received by the coalition government in 2009 and 2010 was unaccounted for.

Source: Transparency International

Not surprisingly, some of these countries are also high in misery

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