Transparency International’s (TI) has announced the list of Corruption Perceptions Index 2016 which stated that over two-thirds of the 176 countries and territories in this year’s index fall below the midpoint of its scale of 0 (highly corrupt) to 100 (very clean), with Singapore being placed seventh on the list.
The Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) was established in 1995 as a composite indicator used to measure perceptions of corruption in the public sector in different countries around the world.
It noted that this year’s results highlight the connection between corruption and inequality, which feed off each other to create a vicious circle between corruption, unequal distribution of power in society, and unequal distribution of wealth.

José Ugaz, Chair of Transparency International, said, “In too many countries, people are deprived of their most basic needs and go to bed hungry every night because of corruption, while the powerful and corrupt enjoy lavish lifestyles with impunity.”
The report also said that interplay of corruption and inequality also feeds populism. When traditional politicians fail to tackle corruption, people grow cynical. Increasingly, people are turning to populist leaders who promise to break the cycle of corruption and privilege. Yet this is likely to exacerbate – rather than resolve – the tensions that fed the populist surge in the first place.
“More countries declined than improved in this year’s results, showing the urgent need for committed action to thwart corruption,” the report said.
However, one should note that this index measures perception of corruption in public bodies. It does not cover whether is there actual corruption taking place in the public bodies nor legalised corruption such as paying public staff ridiculously high wages under the guise of preventing corruption to gain their loyalty.
One should also not forget that in the crony-capitalism index 2016 by The Economist, states that Russia took the top spot for its percentage of billionaires’ wealth coming from crony capitalism, according to data compiled by The Economist on 5 May 2016. Following close behind in second place is Malaysia. Singapore appears as well, as the fourth country on the list.
2016 cronyism
Using data from a list of the world’s billionaires and their worth published by Forbes, the report labels each individual as crony or not based on the source of their wealth. Industries that have a lot of interaction with the state are vulnerable to crony capitalism.
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