Taiwan was ranked 37th among 176 nations and regions in an annual global index on the perception of corruption in the public sector, dropping five spots from last year, the results showed yesterday.
The Corruption Perception Index (CPI) scores countries on a scale from zero (highly corrupt) to 100 (very clean).
Taiwan scored 61.
The nation’s ranking at 37th was the third-highest in East Asia, according to Transparency International’s (TI) Corruption Perception Index 2012.
Taiwan trailed Hong Kong, which had a score of 76, and Japan, with 74. South Korea was ranked 45th with a score of 56.
Last year, Taiwan was ranked 32nd among 183 nations and territories. On the scale of zero to 10 that was used previously, Taiwan scored 6.1 last year.
TI-Taiwan executive director Kevin Yeh (葉一璋) said because TI has revised the methodology for the index this year, it would not be accurate to compare the two scores on the different scales.
Denmark, Finland and New Zealand shared the top spot this year with a score of 90. Among the other nations scoring higher than 80 were Sweden (88), Switzerland (86), Australia (85), Norway (85) and Canada (84).
China remained in 80th place with a score of 39.
A country or territory had to be evaluated by at least three independent institutions before being included in the index. The polls reflect different groups’ opinions on various aspects related to corruption in the polled country.
Noting that domestic surveys have showed the public believe local councils, local governments and the judicial system to be basically corrupt, Chai Sung-lin (柴松林), honorary president of the Taipei-based Chinese Association for Human Rights, said the CPI might not accurately reflect domestic concerns because the institutions conducting the research have little chance to learn about the local situation.