On October 26, 2010 Germany’s Transparency International released its 2010 Corruption Index. This year’s survey included 178 countries. Each nation was given a rank from highly corrupt 0 to highly clean 10 based upon different sources. For the second year in a row Iraq was ranked the fourth most corrupt country in the world. It received a score of 1.5. Somalia was the most corrupt at 1.1. Myanmar and Afghanistan were tied for second with a score of 1.4.
Since the 2003 invasion Iraq has slipped farther and farther down the Corruption Index. In 2003 Iraq was number 20. It went down to number 17 in 2005, up to 22 in 2005, and then fell all the way to number three in 2006. 2007 Iraq received its worst ranking at number two. It then rose to number three in 2008, and has stayed at number four this year and last.
Iraq’s Ranking In Corruption Index 2003-2010
A review of some of the major corruption stories this year shows why Iraq has such a low ranking. In September 2010 an appeals court dropped the case against former Trade Minister Abdul al-Falah al-Sudani even though it’s believed that $4-$8 billion went missing from his ministry. That was part of the country’s long tradition of not prosecuting any high officials for wrongdoing. In May, three state-run banks made $7.7 billion in illegal, off the book loans to three private banks. In April, Karbala’s provincial council accused the Trade Ministry of buying expired food for the ration system, which is the largest in the world. There’s also the fact that Iraq lacks adequate bookkeeping of its finances, records of most of its petroleum production, and has massive oil smuggling, all of which facilitate and encourage theft, bribery, and fraud. As long as all the major political parties benefit from stealing from the government they run, this sad state of affairs will continue.
Transparency International, “Corruption Perceptions Index 2010,” 10/26/10