Greece 'most corrupt' EU country, new survey reveals

Firebomb at anti-austerity riot in Greece Economic and social turmoil in Greece has contributed to an increased perception of corruption

Greece is perceived to have the most corrupt public sector of all 27 EU countries, a new global survey reveals.

Worldwide, Denmark, Finland and New Zealand were seen as the least corrupt nations, while Afghanistan, North Korea and Somalia were perceived to be the most corrupt.

Transparency International's 2012 Corruption Perceptions Index gathered views on 176 countries worldwide.

Two-thirds scored below 50, with zero highly corrupt and 100 very clean.

The UK ranked 17th in the world, with a score of 74.

Greece's global ranking fell from 80th in 2011 to 94th in 2012, reflecting the country's continuing economic turmoil and widespread tax evasion.

Italy was ranked 72nd, below EU-newcomer Romania at 66 in the index.

"Governments need to integrate anti-corruption actions into all public decision-making", said Huguette Labelle, chair of Transparency International (TI), a body set up in 1993 to expose and tackle countrywide corruption.

"Priorities include better rules on lobbying and political financing, making public spending and contracting more transparent and making public bodies more accountable to people."

TI believes there are strong correlations between poverty, conflict and perceived levels of corruption.


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  • rate this

    Comment number 159.

    What an absolutely pointless survey!

  • rate this

    Comment number 158.

    142.Bill Walker
    @129 sixp
    As it is just the Greek economy broken, not their love of life, even in the face of adversity, I will enjoy my Rhodes holiday this year.

    Indeed, I too will be returning for my 12th visit (Corfu this year). A truly stunning country, I would recommend it to all.

  • rate this

    Comment number 157.

    And knowing this we are still giving them bail- out money ?

  • rate this

    Comment number 156.

    Greece is" perceived" to have the most corrupt public sector of all 27 EU countries

    Perceived is the operative word . Perhaps other countries public sectors including the UK are just as corrupt but rather more discrete about it .

  • rate this

    Comment number 155.

    Greece, 100% owned by the EU taxpayer - this is the correct way to describe this country. Will people please get it right. Did the survey take into account the relationship between the police and the press?

  • rate this

    Comment number 154.

    France is way better at glossing over 'inconvenient truths' than Greece. How can I put this so as not to break house rules... France puts a great deal more resources into industrial espionage than it does into national security. French interests come first regardless of law. Examples: Danone's strategically important yoghurt! Pepsi cola 'compromising' French values! Predatory DSK roaming free...

  • rate this

    Comment number 153.

    Greece "percieved" as most corrupt - because media present that perception.

    Turn it around and have the media present the truth - that the UK is the most corrupt INCLUDING the media, then perhaps our perception of the World will be different?

  • rate this

    Comment number 152.

    Question 1 ) define perception
    2) define corruption
    3) who answered the survey

    Personal opinions are disallowed in court.

  • rate this

    Comment number 151.

    Really? I had no idea that Greeks were corrupt and never pay their taxes. They also wear Swastikas and Nazi uniforms when Angela Merkel visits; they must be such lovely people, definitely going to Greece for my holiday, corrupt and racist.

  • rate this

    Comment number 150.

    @139 misallot - the quote marks are the clue in the headline. Anything in quote marks is "according to someone", rather than a flat out statement of fact.

    For example - Olympic legacy 'needs leadership' - the 'needs leadership' part was according to the National Audit Office as opposed to the BBC stating it as a fact.

  • rate this

    Comment number 149.

    Bankers found to be rigging LIBOR rates and forced to pay back PPI claims, UK MP's fiddling their expenses on a huge scale, cash for questions, cash for honours, UK media publishing lies, fabricated sensationalist tripe, hacking phones to make money.....etc, etc

    And the UK is only "perceived" to be 17th?

    Can't help but feel slightly disappointed that we are not at least in the top 10.

  • rate this

    Comment number 148.

    God save incorruptible Britannia!

    Good to see we're ranked a lofty 17'th with honest Japan, wait, their Govt has ties to criminal organisations ?! Our govt must be doing something equally unsavoury to be ranked equal with Japan. I wonder what it could be...

    What should we do, citizens' arrest?

  • rate this

    Comment number 147.

    Never mind Greece, the EU has a number of highly suspect practices and is no longer fit for purpose, instead the EU requires a radical overhaul. Also the way the UK government operates when it fails to curb its gross profligacy and lack of accountability to the UK tax payer.

  • rate this

    Comment number 146.

    Any other HYS on the go? Getting bored with this one tbh

  • rate this

    Comment number 145.

    Having just seen that the Lib Dems want to fund green issues in third world countries, including Columbia, by using £2bn of our money, one has to ask about back pocket deals.
    Corruption is a way of life in many countries and now that we are multi-cultural should we accept it as well?

  • rate this

    Comment number 144.

    The days are gone when if you found a wallet on the street you'd hand it into the police station, I personally still would, but that's mainly down to being rewarded for honesty when I found it when I was 9 years old.... these days you get rewarded for failure, so it's no wonder the world has turned into a stinking cesspit of corruption and back handers

  • rate this

    Comment number 143.

    Statistics, weather forcasting and alchemy! All about as reliable!

  • rate this

    Comment number 142.

    No, it's just that they have a poor electronics repair system. I have been to many Tavernas and other retail outlets where their credit card machine is regrettably broken, so they are forced to take cash.
    @129 sixp
    As it is just the Greek economy broken, not their love of life, even in the face of adversity, I will enjoy my Rhodes holiday this year.

  • rate this

    Comment number 141.

    Although as a large amount of our EU money is reported to go the Mafia, one way or another, I think Italy must be up their"

    Whilst the EU accounts have had their problems I do not believe the EU CoA has ever reported that any money, let alone a "large amount" has gone to the Mafia. Where do you get this "report" and what is its evidence?

  • rate this

    Comment number 140.

    Maybe they do not see it as corruption. If you grow up within a culture where cheating is normal, it is hard to see cheating as anything other than normal. Like exceeding the speed limit in UK


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