The Indian Economy Blog

February 2, 2009

A Global Corruption Map

Filed under: Business,Corruption/ Red Tape — Arjun Swarup @ 4:11 pm

An interesting map, published by Forbes, detailing corruption across the globe.

It’s interesting how the bulk of the world is corrupt, and there is some level of correlation between overall wealth levels and corruption (the wealthy nations are less corrupt – Western Europe, Japan, Australia, North America).

It sure as hell doesn’t seem to impact growth rates though – some of the fastest growing countries are pretty corrupt. It would be interesting to see if there is a link between income inequality and corruption levels…


  1. Hi there,

    What corruption statistics are we talking about? The ones published by Forbes? They Americans always want to see themselves in a particular way and we are helping them do that.

    It would be naive to think that “Developed” countries are far less corrupt. There is corruption everywhere. I can swear by my personal experience around the world. Its only less evident there and not in the petty form that exists in the developing world.

    Corruption exists in developed countries at extreme levels in the positions of higher authority. Its done in a very “legitimate” way through offshore accounts and holdings in companies. A common man can’t even talk about it openly. So much for their democracy.

    Don’t let the world tell you about your problem. We know it already and it is our inferiority complex to believe that we are the only ones that are doing something wrong.


    Comment by Nitin — February 2, 2009 @ 7:07 pm

  2. Nitin, This is not Forbes’s but Transparency Intl’s data. AFAIK they are trustworthy.

    Comment by SJ — February 2, 2009 @ 8:16 pm

  3. Anyway addressing th topic… income inequality and corruption are things we normally associate automatically which to me means it needs a more rational investigation :)

    Comment by SJ — February 2, 2009 @ 8:19 pm

  4. Pointless post really. Now how you even relate some subjective and totally baseless corruption index with growth rate, I do not understand.. Ludicrous..

    Comment by stonedwasherman — February 3, 2009 @ 3:27 pm

  5. Well not directly but MAY BE indirectly corruption and growth rate can be related… the money is not invested or even saved…no question of it getting taxed too…

    Comment by AP — February 3, 2009 @ 10:12 pm

  6. Corruption has a very strong bearing on the growth rate! How can this be untrue?

    What I wanted to bring out is that we are smart enough to know ourselves, lets not look at ourselves in the neighbours mirror. All these NGOs are funded by certain “group” for PR purpose. They keep the population in the developed world “happy” about their government.

    I was surprised to know that CNN and all the US based news channels are telling the American public that India, China and Russia are the biggest losers in the financial crisis. How manipulative!

    Corruption is rampant all over the developed world. Even the otherwise ethical Germans, Siemens recently paid a 1.5 billion Euro fine for bribing officials. VW was in a great controversy some time back. If one of the factors in the index would have been “moral corruption”, it alone would have sent the US on the top of the ranking.

    Comment by Nitin — February 4, 2009 @ 10:19 pm

  7. Nitin,

    Could you provide me with some links to where CNN and other US based news sources are saying that the BRIC nations are the biggest losers. I’m also in the US, and haven’t come across this much – in fact, there seems to be a lot of debate around the causes of the crises, the fixes required, and the biggest losers/winners (not sure if there are any winners).

    As for corruption, I think it’s important to make a distinction between basic “baseline” corruption driven by bureaucracy,poverty, inefficiency and red-tape, and corruption driven by human greed. All societies across the world have the latter (Mittalgate in the UK, and Enron in the US are two examples come to mind). However, there is virtually none of the former in industrialized nations, in terms of getting basic services and such like. That, I believe, is what the report is highlighting, and something I completely agree with.

    Comment by Arjun Swarup — February 7, 2009 @ 6:27 pm

  8. This is definitely interesting. I was under impression of grave consequences in some of the middle eastern nations of corruption yet the colors are darker than many other nations – very interesting!

    Comment by Dhaval — February 28, 2009 @ 12:37 am

  9. am not an economist but yes it seems that there is some correlation between growth rates and fact many developed nations which are now percieved as less corrupt have gone through the phase india and china currently seem to be undergoing.
    in india apart from the corruption it is the daily demeaning that one has to undergo at the hands of bureaucrats which hurts more

    Comment by arun bhagoliwal — April 29, 2009 @ 12:32 pm

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