Muscat – Transparency International’s 2023 Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) shows that only 28 of the 180 countries measured by the index have improved their corruption levels in the last 12 years, and 34 countries have significantly worsened.

Despite progress made across the planet in criminalising corruption and establishing specialised institutions to address it, corruption levels remain stagnant globally, the index report stated.

The index ranks Oman 70th, one place down since 2022 with a score of 42/100, while in the GCC, UAE is the top ranked country at 26th, followed by Qatar (40th). Saudi Arabia is ranked 53rd, Kuwait 63rd and Bahrain 76th. 

For over a decade, most Arab states have failed to improve their positions on CPI and 2023 is no exception, Kinda Hattar, Regional Advisor for Middle East and North Africa, Transparency International, said.

“Corruption continues to hinder citizens’ access to essential services, including health and education, and in many cases, even threatens their right to life. With only seven years to go to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals, the Arab states struggle to fulfil their commitments to justice and human rights. This is due to the absence of proper infrastructure and national integrity systems. The Arab states have an average score of 34 out of 100, demonstrating the long road ahead in assuring integrity and justice throughout the region,” she said.

The CPI ranks 180 countries and territories by their perceived levels of public-sector corruption according to experts and businesspeople. It relies on 13 independent data sources and uses a scale of zero to 100, where zero is highly corrupt and 100 is very clean.

Most countries are largely failing to stop corruption – over 80% of the world’s population lives in countries with CPI scores below the global average of 43. In addition, the top 25 countries in the index make up just over ten per cent of all people. Corruption therefore remains a challenge that directly or indirectly harms most people.

For the sixth year in a row, Denmark tops the ranking, with a score of 90. Finland and New Zealand follow closely with scores of 87 and 85, respectively. Norway (84), Singapore (83), Sweden (82), Switzerland (82), the Netherlands (79), Germany (78) and Luxembourg (78) complete the top ten this year.

Meanwhile, countries experiencing conflict tend to score worst. This year, Somalia (11), Venezuela (13), Syria (13) and South Sudan (13) are at the bottom of the index. Yemen (16), Nicaragua (17), North Korea (17), Haiti (17), Equatorial Guinea (17), Turkmenistan (18) and Libya (18) are the next lowest performers.

© Apex Press and Publishing Provided by SyndiGate Media Inc. (