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20 Most Corrupt Countries in Europe

Corruption in Europe
Corruption in Europe

From villages in rural India to the corridors of power in Brussels, Transparency International gives voice to the victims and witnesses of corruption. We work together with governments, businesses and citizens to stop the abuse of power, bribery and secret deals. Using the corruption perceptions index (CPI), countries and territories are ranked on how corrupt a country’s public sector is perceived to be. It is a composite index, a combination of surveys and assessments of corruption, collected by a variety of reputable institutions. The CPI is the most widely used indicator of corruption worldwide.

We have used Transparency International’s 2014 report to compile this list – the order of the list is that the most corrupt is at the top of the list:

  1. Ukraine

    Capital: Kiev
    President: Petro Poroshenko
    Corruption is a widespread and growing problem in Ukrainian society. Bribes are given to ensure that public services are delivered either in time or at all; and Ukrainians stated they give bribes because they think it is customary and expected. In 2014’s Transparency International Corruption Perceptions Index Ukraine was ranked 142nd out of the 175 countries investigated (tied with Uganda and the Comoros).
  2. Russia

    Capital: Moscow
    President: Vladimir Putin
    There are reports that suggest President Putin is worth at least $200bn. Corruption in Russia is a significant problem that affects the lives of Russia’s citizens. Corruption has penetrated all levels of government and most other aspects of life in Russia. The five top areas for corruption are as follows: Government contracts and purchases; Issuance of permits and certificates; Law-enforcement agencies; Land distribution and land relations; Construction.
  3. Kazakhstan

    Capital: Astana
    President: Nursultan Äbishuly Nazarbayev
    No election ever held in Kazakhstan has met international standards. In 2005, the World Bank listed Kazakhstan as a corruption hotspot, on a par with Angola, Bolivia, Kenya, Libya and Pakistan. In 2012, Kazakhstan ranked low in an index of the least corrupt countries and the World Economic Forum listed corruption as the biggest problem in doing business in the country.
  4. Azerbaijan

    Capital: Baku
    President: Ilham Aliyev
    The Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP), based in Sarajevo and Bucharest, has once named Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev as corruption’s person of the year.
  5. Belarus

    Capital: Minsk
    President: Alexander Lukashenko
    Belarus has been described as acountry where corruption is present at all government levels – in industry, education, healthcare and construction are particularly vulnerable sectors, and a rigid hierarchical system of government makes it difficult to effectively address the issue.
  6. Kosovo

    Capital: Pristina
    President: Atifete Jahjaga
    According to several public surveys in Kosovo and reports from institutions such as the European Commission, levels of corruption and impunity among politicians are high.
  7. Albania

    Capital: Tirana
    President: Bujar Nishani
    Corruption is considered one of the most problematic factors in establishing a business in Albania.
  8. Moldova

    President: Nicolae Timofti
    According to Transparency International, 37% of Moldovans report paying a bribe in 2010; and one of the most perceived corrupt institutions is the police.
  9. Armenia

    Capital: Yerevan
    President: Serzh Sargsyan
    The United Nations Development Programme in Armenia views corruption in Armenia as a serious challenge to its development. The selective and non-transparent application of tax, customs and regulatory rules, as well as weak enforcement of court decisions fuels opportunities for corruption.
  10. Serbia

    Capital: Belgrade
    President: Tomislav Nikolic
    Corruption levels are perceived to be high by surveyed residents of Serbia, and public trust in key institutions remains low; public procurement, public administration recruitment processes, mining and rail operations are sectors with a serious problem of conflict of interest.
  11. Bosnia Herzegovina

    Capital: Sarajevo
    President (rotating presidency between Bosnian, Croat and Serbian): Bakir Izetbegovic
    A general public survey on corruption from Transparency International shows that citizens perceive Bosnia Herzegovina’s political structures to be deeply affected by corruption. Two-third of citizens believe that the government’s efforts to combat corruption are ineffective. Bosnia Herzegovina’s complex legal and regulatory frameworks create opportunities for corruption, and facilitation payments are seen as pervasive throughout the Bosnian business climate.
  12. Montenegro

    Capital: Podgorica
    President: Filip Vujanovic
    Corruption remains a serious problem in the Montenegro, as the fight against corruption is constrained by frequent legislative changes and the lax attitude among law enforcement authorities to investigate corruption allegations, especially those involving high-level officials.
  13. Macedonia

    Capital: Skopje
    President: Gjorge Ivanov
    The business environment in Macedonia is negatively affected by corruption. Several sources indicate that corruption is considered an obstacle for doing business, and businessmen have reported that bribery is demanded sometimes during public procurement and contracting.
  14. Georgia

    Capital: Tbilisi
    President: Giorgi Margvelashvili
    Corruption in Georgia has been an issue in the post-Soviet decades, however low-level corruption has been virtually eliminated in recent years.
  15. Turkey

    Capital: Ankara
    President: Recep Tayyip Erdogan
    Corruption in Turkey is an issue affecting the accession of Turkey to the European Union. The 2013 corruption scandal in Turkey led to a criminal investigation that involved several key people in the Turkish government from the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP).
  16. Romania

    Capital: Bucharest
    President: Klaus Iohannis
    Despite some improvement, corruption remains a serious problem in Romania. Romanian law and regulations contain provisions intended to prevent corruption, but enforcement is generally weak.
  17. Italy

    Capital: Rome
    President (largely ceremonial): Sergio Mattarella
    Political corruption remains a major problem in Italy, particularly in Southern Italy including Calabria, parts of Campania and Sicily where corruption perception is at a high level. Political parties are ranked as the most corrupt institution in Italy, closely followed by public officials and Parliament, according to Transparency International
  18. Greece

    Capital: Athens
    President (largely ceremonial): Prokopis Pavlopoulos
    Tax evasion and corruption is a problem in Greece, which has been described by Greek politicians as a national sport – with up to €30 billion per year going uncollected.
  19. Bulgaria

    Capital: Sofia
    President: Rosen Plevneliev
    A Sofia-based think tank the Study for Democracy, found in 2014 the number of people participating in corruption was now the highest in 15 years, and has increased despite significant pressure from the EU on Bulgaria to improve in its fight against corruption. Record levels of corruption in Bulgaria have made criminal law enforcement ineffective and inadequate, with around a 158,000 corrupt transactions carried out each month.
  20. Croatia

    Capital: Zagreb
    President: Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic
    In order to be qualified as a member of the EU, Croatia has taken measures to combat corruption. The legal and institutional framework as well as government agencies are addressing the issue of corruption in a much larger scale, and the inter-agency cooperation for corruption prevention has also increased.

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