Many governments in Asia Pacific fail to stop corruption; 900 million people are paying bribes

Issued by Transparency International Secretariat



Approximately 900 million – or just over one in four – people living in 16 countries in Asia Pacific, including some of its biggest economies are estimated to have paid a bribe to access public services, according to a new public opinion poll from the anti-corruption movement Transparency International.

Transparency International spoke to nearly 22,000 people about their recent experiences with corruption for People and Corruption: Asia Pacific, part of the Global Corruption Barometer series.

The results show lawmakers across the region need to do much more to support whistleblowers; governments must keep promises to combat corruption, including their commitments to meet the Sustainable Development Goals.

In China, nearly three-quarters of the people surveyed said corruption has increased over the last three years, suggesting people do not see the major offensive on corruption is working.

Only one in five people surveyed thought the level of corruption had decreased, while half of people polled said their government was doing a bad job fighting corruption.

“Governments must do more to deliver on their anti-corruption commitments. It’s time to stop talking and act. Millions of people are forced to pay bribes for public services and it is the poor who are most vulnerable,” said José Ugaz, chair of Transparency International.

Thirty-eight percent of the poorest people surveyed said they paid a bribe, the highest proportion of any income group.

“Without proper law enforcement corruption thrives. Bribery is not a small crime, it takes food off the table, it prevents education, it impedes proper healthcare and ultimately it can kill,” Ugaz said.

Police top the list of public services most often demanding a bribe; just under a third of people who had come into contact with a police officer in the last 12 months saying they paid a bribe.

People said that the most important action to stop corruption is speaking out or refusing to pay bribes. But more than one in five said they felt powerless to help fight corruption.

Transparency International recommends: 

The surveys were carried out face-to-face or by telephone between July 2015 and January 2017. They were sampled and weighted to be nationally representative of all adults. Go to http://www.transparency.org to see the methodology note. 


For any press enquiries please contact

Berlin – from 6:00am GMT
T: +49 30 3438 20 666
E: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

Singapore – until 6:00am GMT (1:00pm in Singapore)
Rukshana Nanayakkara
T: + 49 176 277 63 115
T: + 65 6879 2555

Latest

Support Transparency International

On trial for corruption: Teodoro Obiang, son of the president of Equatorial Guinea

In the first case brought by civil society in France, Teodoro Nguema Obiang Mangue, the son of the president of Equatorial Guinea, is on trial for corruption.

Corruption Reporting Award: Honouring investigative journalism

For the third year Transparency International has sponsored the Corruption Reporting Award as part of the One World Media Awards. Check out this year's winner, Stealing Paradise, a shocking investigation into corruption, intimidation and the sale of idyllic islands in the Maldives.

Glass quarter full? The state of global anti-money laundering in four charts

Out of the hundreds of commitments governments have made to fight corruption and money laundering, one of the easiest to keep track of is to implement the global anti-money laundering standards.

Ukraine takes important first step towards ending corporate secrecy

Ukraine has taken a first step in the fight against corporate secrecy and corruption by agreeing to share data on who ultimately owns and controls Ukrainian companies.

Who doesn’t know the Cayman Islands is a great place to hide money? The Cayman Islands

In May, the Cayman Islands government quietly released a report that just about acknowledges the country's deficiencies at thwarting money laundering.

Your ideas welcome: help us set higher standards in state-owned companies

We need your help to draw up principles for fighting corruption in state-owned enterprises. Please share your ideas!

Brazil: Open data just made investigating corruption easier

All of the official documentation of from Brazil’s biggest corruption scandal – Operation Car Wash or Lava Jato – is now available to search easily online.

Social Media

Follow us on Social Media

Would you like to know more?

Sign up to stay informed about corruption news and our work around the world