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Corruption’s ties to poverty

Hillary Wicai Nov 7, 2006
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Corruption’s ties to poverty

Hillary Wicai Nov 7, 2006
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TEXT OF STORY

MARK AUSTIN THOMAS: A new survey of many different nations finds that those countries perceived as being the most corrupt are also the poorest. Hillary Wicai looks at the connection.


HILLARY WICAI: Corruption is something folks take great pains to cover up, but many company managers, journalists and public officials have experience that they can relate.

And it’s surveys of those folks and others on which the Corruption Perceptions Index is based.

This year’s conclusion is grim: Nearly half of the 163 countries rated are perceived to suffer from rampant corruption.

Nancy Boswell is with Transparency International, which wrote the report. She says embezzlement and bribery are major impediments to economic growth even when big projects like bridges or power stations get built.

NANCY BOSWELL: Those programs are of such magnitude that they afford a better opportunity for major bribes. And so many leaders may go for an infrastructure project rather than smaller projects for education and health.

The World Bank Institute estimates that more than a trillion dollars is paid worldwide in bribes each year.

In Washington, I’m Hillary Wicai for Marketplace.

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