The CPI ranks 180 countries and territories by their perceived levels of public sector corruption, drawing on 13 expert assessments and surveys of business executives. It uses a scale of zero (highly corrupt) to 100 (very clean).
More than two-thirds of countries score below 50, with an average score of only 43. Since 2012, only 22 countries have significantly improved their scores, including Estonia, Greece and Guyana. Twenty-one have significantly declined, including Australia, Canada and Nicaragua.
Our research shows several of the most advanced economies cannot afford to be complacent if they are to keep up their anti-corruption momentum. Four G7 countries score lower than last year: Canada (-4), France (-3), the UK (-3) and the US (-2). Germany and Japan have seen no improvement, while Italy gained one point.
To reduce corruption and restore trust in politics, Transparency International recommends that governments:
- Reinforce checks and balances and promote separation of powers.
- Tackle preferential treatment to ensure budgets and public services aren’t driven by personal connections or biased towards special interests;
- Control political financing to prevent excessive money and influence in politics;
- Manage conflicts of interest and address “revolving doors”;
- Regulate lobbying activities by promoting open and meaningful access to decision-making;
- Strengthen electoral integrity and prevent and sanction misinformation campaigns;
- Empower citizens and protect activists, whistleblowers and journalists;