Survey: Corruption rising in Asia

Paying bribes for government services appears to be more common in India than in other Asian countries, but corruption is seen to be increasing across the region, according to a TI survey.

In India, more than half the respondents in a Transparency International corruption survey said they paid a bribe in the last 12 months when interacting with government services, mainly police and registry & permit services.

India’s score (54 percent) was topped in Asia only by Cambodia (57 percent), according to TI’s 2013 Global Corruption Barometer, a public opinion survey that offers views of the general public on corruption and its impact on their lives.

By comparison, in Australia and Japan, the figure was 1 percent. China was not included in the survey, which tallied responses of 114,000 people in 107 countries. The global aggregate score on the issue of paying bribes was 27 percent. 

Another question asked local respondents if they believed that the level of corruption in their country has “increased a lot” over the last two years. In Indonesia, 72 percent of respondents believed that it was getting worse, while in India the figure was 70 percent and Thailand 66 percent.

However, respondents in “clean” Asian countries – those that have been deemed the least corrupt on TI’s Corruption Perception Index in 2012 — also perceive that domestic corruption is spreading.
In New Zealand, which was ranked by TI as one of the world’s least corrupt countries in 2012, 64 percent believed corruption has increased over the last two years. Similarly, in Australia, ranked the seventh least corrupt country globally last year, 59 percent of respondents perceived an increase.