With a score of 65, Bhutan is ranked the 27th cleanest country in the Asia and Pacific region according to Transparency International’s Corruption Perception Index (TI-CPI) 2016.
The global average score is 43 indicating Bhutan’s score of 65 as above average. The majority of Asia Pacific countries sit in the bottom half of CPI 2016. Nineteen out of 40 countries in the region scored 40 or less out of 100.
The ACC report says that the CPI is a composite index that uses data from 13 different surveys conducted by various organizations. This year, data from five sources, besides perception of business people and country experts, was used to calculate Bhutan’s score. The sources are World Bank Country Policy and Institutional Assessment (CPIA), World Economic Forum Executive Opinion Survey (EOS), Global Insight Country Risk Ratings, Bertelsmann Stiftung’s Transformation Index and Democracy Project for Bhutan.
“TI survey which measures the effectiveness of the overall governance mechanism of the country indicates fighting corruption demands concerted efforts from all the stakeholders to build system of integrity. Controlling corruption will only be effective if all the agencies cooperate and collaborate against the menace,” the report states.
Bhutan’s position and score has remained the same despite the increase in the number of countries and territories participating. Bhutan has featured in TI-CPI for eleven successive years since 2006 and over the years, Bhutan has made remarkable improvements in the rank and score.
ACC report states that Bhutan’s performance can be credited to the blessings and support from the Golden Throne and strong political will from the leaders in the fight against corruption.
Bhutan has been quite successful in its democratic reforms. Institutions with the mandate to promote democratic governance have attested their capacity of fulfilling their critical mandate in a just, fair and transparent manner. ACC maintaining 90 per cent conviction rate by persons charge sheeted and rigorous efforts on prevention through embedding ethics and integrity culture in the overall governance system have also contributed to a large extent.
Higher ranked countries tend to have higher degrees of press freedom, access to information about public expenditure, stronger standards of integrity for public officials, and independent judicial system. Lower ranked countries are attributed to unaccountable governments, lack of oversight, insecurity and shrinking space for civil society, pushing anti-corruption action to the margins in those countries.
“ACC remains committed to tackling corruption in a holistic manner and maintain the score of 65, if not improve, and strive to towards attaining the 20th position by 2020,” ACC’s report states.