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Dublin: 12°C Sunday 19 September 2021

Despite our problems, Ireland is one of the least corrupt countries in the world

We placed alongside Japan and Hong Kong in Transparency International’s corruption index.

Image: Shutterstock/staras

A NEW REPORT has found Ireland to be among the top 20 least corrupt countries on the planet.

While we’ve slipped from joint 17th position to joint 18th, this still puts us ahead of a host of other European nations, like France, Portugal and Spain.

This comes despite the recent revelations in an RTÉ documentary when it was shown that politicians at all levels had incorrectly declared their interests, and some councillors had sought cash payments in return for their services.

The Corruption Perception Index 2015 (CPI 2015), released each year by Transparency International, is seen as the definitive guide to how cleanly each country’s political system is perceived to operate.

What does the score mean?

Ireland’s score of 75 – one that we share with Hong Kong and Japan – places us at the right end of the CPI 2015, although with plenty of room for improvement.

To put the number in context, Denmark, who placed first, were 16 points ahead of us with a score of 91.

At the other end of the scale, the world’s two most corrupt countries, North Korea and Somalia, chalked up scores of just 8 – a full 67 points behind Ireland.

The figure is an amalgamation of data taken from a mixture of international organisations and banks.

Where is corruption a serious problem?

conflict zones

Click here to view a larger version of the above image. 

The report’s most important function is to highlight the devastating impact that corruption has in the countries that are some of the worst offenders.

As Transparency International put it:

Public sector corruption is about so much more than missing money. It’s about people’s lives.

Around the world, 68% of countries still have serious corruption problems, with half of the G20 counting themselves among them.

A correlation was seen between countries facing high levels of both corruption and conflict. Five of the world’s 10 most corrupt countries also ranked in the top 10 for the least peaceful places in the world. 

Read: There’s going to be a review into the law allowing Gsoc to access journalists’ phone records

Also: “What’s in it for me?” – Explosive RTÉ documentary shows politicians seeking cash

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