Greece can root out corruption – just like Hong Kong did
Sadly, news that Greece is last among European Union countries on Transparency International's Corruption Perceptions Index is not surprising. The emerging tax evasion cases, the scandal of people falsely declaring themselves blind on the island of Zakynthos, and the drama over the leaking of the "Lagarde list" of tax evaders have hit the headlines around the world.
Not only is Greece the lowest ranked EU country in an index that measures experts' perceptions of public sector corruption: in 94th place, it ranks a massive 19 places behind the next EU member state, Bulgaria.
Greece is not alone in Europe in needing to wake up to corruption. Portugal and Spain share the same weak oversight of public spending, with auditors too weak or lacking independence from government. Many European countries do not oblige political parties to disclose donations from companies, are lax in regulating the way businesses lobby politicians and officials, or lack scrutiny over governments tendering of contracts to businesses.