But the risk of complacency looms
Transparency International (TI) has rated New Zealand’s Public Sector as the least corrupt in the world in its latest Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI),
The Index is an annual publication, released today throughout the world by the Berlin-based organisation and is based on several factors.
Wellington based Transparency International New Zealand (TINZ) Chair Suzanne Snively said that the top score for New Zealand reflects the integrity of our public servants.
Source of inspiration
“Our Public Sector leaders are inspiring their own people and others to harness the value that integrity and resultant good business contributes to a more prosperous New Zealand. The entire country benefits from investments being made by Public Sector leaders, as well as regulators and businesses. They build public trust and business confidence by identifying and eliminating bribery and corruption and enable industry to leverage our positive ranking,” she said.
No Complacency please
Ms Snively however warned against complacency, which she described as the ‘biggest challenge.’ She said that corruption is too often a low priority.
“Work to enhance transparency must continue for New Zealand to maintain leadership in the fight against corruption. This includes more open public involvement in government decision making and a publicly accessible registry of the beneficial owners of companies and trusts,” she said.
TINZ Patron and Former Commonwealth Secretary General Sir Don McKinnon said that TI and its CPI rankings are independent and objective assessments.
“Today’s announcement reiterates the importance of New Zealand having strong integrity systems in place. A perceived lack of corruption and active examples of good business practices make it easier for kiwi organisations to gain market access offshore, all of which ultimately benefits all New Zealanders,” he said.
TINZ has identified seven important benefits for the New Zealand economy based on having in place strong integrity systems.
These include positive reputation and brand, greater customer loyalty, committed and engaged staff, easier market access, lower cost of business, increased returns on investments and improved access to capital.
About Transparency International
Transparency International is a global civil society coalition based in Berlin, leading the fight against corruption. It compiles a number of measures of different aspects of corruption including the Corruption Perceptions Index, the Global Corruption Barometer, and the Bribe Payers Index. Please visit www.transparency.org
About the Corruption Perceptions Index
The CPI scored and ranked 180 countries and territories in 2017 based on how corrupt a country’s public sector is perceived. 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.
CPI key measures used for New Zealand (and abbreviations) include Bertelsmann Foundation Sustainable Governance Indicators, Economist Intelligence Unit Country Risk Ratings, Global Insight Country Risk Ratings, IMD World Competitiveness Yearbook 2016,
Political Risk Services International Country Risk Guide, World Economic Forum Executive Opinion Survey, World Justice Project Rule of Law Index and Varieties of Democracy Project.
Top performers share key characteristics including high levels of press freedom; access to budget information so that the public knows where money comes from and how it is spent; high levels of integrity among people in power; and judiciaries that do not differentiate between rich and poor, independent from other parts of government.
Scope for Improvement
Key areas of assessment where New Zealand can improve include Access to Information,
Open Government, Order and Security, Fundamental Rights and Civil Justice, Absence of Corruption, Regulatory Enforcement and Lack of Constraints on Government Powers and Criminal Justice.
Transparency International New Zealand Chair Suzanne Snively