Corruption rife in sub-Saharan Africa, DR Congo tops graft list

 

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Source: Thomson Reuters Foundation

 

Author: Magdalena Mis

 

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LONDON, June 17 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – Half of the 10 most corrupt countries in the world are in sub-Saharan Africa, a region that is attracting increasing investor interest due to its natural resources and rapid population growth, according to a global graft index released on Wednesday.

Democratic Republic of Congo topped the 2015 Corruption Risk Index by risk advisory firm Verisk Maplecroft, followed by Somalia, Central African Republic, Sudan and Equatorial Guinea.

 

The report blamed factors including high levels of poverty and lack of institutions to combat bribery for sub-Saharan Africa being the region most affected by corruption.

« Factors such as weak rule of law and a lack of institutional capacity … undermine efforts to combat entrenched systems of patronage, while exposure to corrupt public officials and a reliance on third party agents is also higher, » Trevor Slack, Verisk Maplecroft analyst, said in a statement.

 

A key reason why politicians fail to fight bribery is that senior officials responsible for addressing the issue profit from it most, the report said.

Middle Eastern countries such as Iraq or Syria continued to dominate the list of countries where graft remained a major blow to the business environment due to conflict and almost non-existent rule of law.

 

The study named some of the world’s top energy producers as having extreme corruption risk, among them Iraq, Russia, Venezuela, Nigeria and Kazakhstan.

The annual index ranks 198 countries on the prevalence of bribery and government effectiveness in fighting it.

 

(Reporting by Magdalena Mis; Editing by Katie Nguyen; Please credit Thomson Reuters Foundation, the charitable arm of Thomson Reuters, that covers humanitarian news, women’s rights, corruption and climate change. Visit www.trust.org)

 

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