Latvia still viewed as most corrupt in Baltics

Despite improving, Latvia still is seen as the most corrupt of the Baltic countries, according to the latest Corruption Perception Index published by the Berlin-based watchdog group Transparency International.

Latvia placed 52nd in the latest survey, tied with the Czech Republic, Morocco, the Slovak Republic and Sri Lanka. Last year, the index ranked Latvia 59th.

The index, based on polls of business people, academics and country analysts, measured how experts view the level of corruption in 102 nations.

Estonia tied with Taiwan at 29th, down one notch from last year’s survey. Lithuania increased by two to 36th, tied with Belarus, South Africa and Tunisia.

In reporting the results, Transparency International expressed dismay that more than half the countries earned less than 5 on its 10-point scale of corruption. Estonia’s score was 5.6, but Lithuania’s was 4.8 and Latvia’s 3.7. According to the survey, Finland is perceived as the least corrupt nation in the world, while Bangladesh is the most corrupt.

Andris Straumanis is a special correspondent for and a co-founder of Latvians Online. From 2000–2012 he was editor of the website.

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