Transparency International has published this year’s list of some of the world’s most corrupt countries. It’s the only list of its kind and scores on a scale of 0 to 100, based on survey scores from experts and business people and their confidence in the public.
Burundi’s lack of economic freedom has the economy sitting in the hands of a group of elites. According to the International Crisis group, “The monopolization of public and private resources has the peace-building process based on development and economic growth bolstered by state machinery and driven by investment from foreign lands”
Billions of dollars in diamond revenue remains unaccounted for, according to human rights groups. President Robert Mugabe has also been accused of allowing concessions in the Marange diamond fields to Chinese firms. The Zimbabwean military, has been accused of abuses and smuggling of diamonds to Mozambique. Most recently, a survey found that Zimbabwe lost more then $2 billion to corruption last year.
Companies ranging from logging to the state-owned iron-ore industry have come under the hammer for corruption. Earlier this year, federal legislators revealed $1.2 billion in scams from one iron-ore company, as well as a widespread kickback scheme. Recently, the mayor of Venezuela’s third largest city, Valencia, was detained over accusations of corruption.
In the last three months, over 100 businessmen and local officials have been arrested on corruption charges; analysts say it’s just the beginning. Corruption is widespread in all areas of government and in the highest levels of Haiti’s political sector. Those who fight corruption are generally arrested or killed. Last month, prominent anti-corruption lawyer Andre Michel was arrested after he launched a case against President Michel Martelly’s family.
This year’s runner-up to most corrupt country in the world, North Korea’s closed economy and system of government has lead to corruption and bribery. There is very little foreign investment in North Korea, and the country is plagued by corruption in its political and bureaucratic system since the early 1990s when the Stalinist North Korea collapsed. One of the world’s last remaining communist nations, North Korea is plagued with food and basic good shortages.
Turkmenistan’s legal system makes the public system vulnerable to corruption, while the judicial system uses bribery and graft. Turkmenistan’s president spends revenues from the country’s primary source of income, hydrocarbons sales —— at his discretion while no national budget has ever been published in full.
War-wracked Iraq has been plagued with corruption for years, but millions continue to be stolen from state coffers. Iraqis report that bribes need to be paid ot it is impossible to get a job in the army or government, and even then higher bribes can send a person to prison or oust them from a job. A recent study completed by the U.N. Assistance Mission to Iraq found that 50% of those questioned comment that corruption is on the rise, noting that the average Civil Servant must pay at least quarterly bribes each year.
South Sudan only become a country in 2011, but officials have been accused of the same charges as before. South Sudan produces half a million barrels of oil per day. But of the over $10 billion collected in oil revenues, $4 billion has been lost due to public sector corruption.
And let’s not forget Sudan
The Sudanese government controls the oil sector, which Transparency International says is filled with cronyism and graft. Public servants often demand bribes to provide even do their own jobs, and government officials are allowed to act with impunity. Regional experts say that no transparency in Sudan allows for corruption at the local levels of government. While the Sudan government created the country’s first anti-corruption agency in 2012, the agency has not yet to do anything.