Friday, 3 February 2017
The 2016 index scores and ranks 176 countries and territories from around the world on the perceived level of corruption in the public sector, from 0, being very corrupt, to 100, being very clean.

Some key facts from the 2016 index include:
  • Only one third of countries scored higher than 50 out of 100. The average score worldwide was 43 out of 100, described by Transparency International as 'paltry' and “indicating endemic corruption in a country’s public sector”.
  • Denmark and New Zealand share first place as having the lowest perceived public service corruption. Denmark has held the top spot every year since 2012, while New Zealand has moved up from last year’s 4th place position.
  • Somalia, South Sudan and North Korea are at the bottom of the index, having the highest perceived public service corruption. Somalia has held the bottom position every year since 2007.
  • Australia’s score (79 out of 100) and rank (13th) are both unchanged from 2015, after three years of decline prior to this. Australia has been out of the top ten perceived-cleanest countries since 2014.
  • Of Australia’s top ten trading partners, six have weaker scores than Australia. This includes Australia’s top trade partner, China, which scored only 40 out of 100 on the index. These results highlight the challenges that Australian businesses face in doing business in a number of key overseas markets.
"Australia now has the choice of whether it wants to stay stuck down in 13th position, risk sliding further or make the real efforts needed to climb back up - which is all the more reason for governments, business and civil society to join with us in mapping out a better strategy." – Professor AJ Brown, Transparency International Australia director.

Some practical suggestions discussed at the launch event included:
  • Following the publication of Australia’s first Open Government Partnership National Action Plan in December 2016, implementation of the plan should now be a prime focus.
  • The anti-corruption legislation that already exists should be more effectively used, particularly the foreign bribery provisions of the Criminal Code Act, under which there continues to have been no convictions.
  • The Australian Government has made a commitment to whistleblowing protection legislation. As part of this, it is important to realise that actual whistleblowers do not necessarily recognise themselves as such at the time of their disclosure.
  • While legislation plays an important role in the fight against corruption, a culture of ethics, accountability and transparency within an organisation is vital to achieving real success.

National Integrity 2017

Next month sees the launch of Transparency International Australia’s first biennial conference, the National Integrity 2017. Co-hosted with Griffith University, the two-day event aims to build the alliance between the public and private sectors in order to facilitate robust discussions on strengthening Australia’s anti-corruption systems.
The National Integrity 2017 runs from 16-17 March 2016 at the Novotel, Brisbane. Further information is available from Transparency International.
Click here to read Transparency International’s Corruption Perceptions Index 2016 publication.
For more information on KordaMentha Forensic's corruption, fraud risk and other forensic services, please click here.