A high-ranking official of the Maritime Security Agency (Bakamla) was nabbed in a sting operation by the national antigraft agency in Jakarta on Wednesday (14/12). (Antara Photo/Akbar Nugroho Gumay)

Indonesia Improves Corruption Index Score, but Malaysia, Singapore Do Better


JANUARY 25, 2017

Jakarta. Indonesia has recorded a slight improvement in the Corruption Perceptions Index 2016, but was unable to raise its position in the global rankings.

Indonesia scored 37, a slight improvement from the previous year's 36, in the annual survey released by the Berlin-based Transparency International.

The index annually ranks countries by their perceived levels of corruption, as determined by expert assessments and opinion surveys.

Currently, the index ranks 176 countries on a scale from 100 to zero, with a mark of 100 indicating that a country is completely clean of corruption.

Indonesia ranked 90th out of 176 countries, a slight drop from 88th last year.

Transparency International Indonesia secretary general, Dadang Trisasongko, said Indonesia has made a five point improvement in the past five years, despite still showing weak and ineffective efforts to counter corruption. Indonesia has a specific target to reach rank 50 in 2016, which they failed to achieve.

"The slow progress was caused by enforcement efforts that focused only on the bureaucracy sector," Dadang said during a press conference in Jakarta on Wednesday (25/01).

"The strategy has not significantly addressed corruption in politics, legal and private sectors," he added.

Transparency International cited the Panama Papers  a massive leak of documents from a Panamanian law firm that shone a spotlight on the shadowy world of offshore companies used to avoid tax  as a reminder for the state to push anti-corruption programs and increase transparency in the private sector.

Presidential Chief of Staff Teten Masduki said Indonesia's slight improvement in the survey was not enough in light of the government-initiated reforms in bureaucracy and laws.

"The president will not be happy with this one. We want more advance improvement," he said.

"I hope we will get a better score next year so it can be a reference to boost the country’s investment as well. If the score improves, we will see improvements on the ease of doing business and investment, as business will certainty improve while bribery practices jump down."

Denmark and New Zealand topped the survey with a score of 90, followed by Finland with a score of 89 and Sweden with a score of 88. Regionally, Indonesia arrived in fourth place, behind Singapore at 85, Brunei at 58 and Malaysia at 49.

The worldwide average index stood at 43.