Leading global anti-corruption NGO Transparency International just released its 2012 corruption index, and according to it, Hungary seems less corrupt than it did last year!
The latest edition of the famous ranking shows Hungary moving up a full eight notches in the global competition for the title “world’s least crooked country,” from 54th out of 183 countries surveyed last year to 46th out of 176 examined in 2012. No word on what happened to the seven countries that appeared last year but dropped out this year, though one assumes nothing good.
Anyway, as always the focus is not where Hungary scores in terms of the whole world, or in Europe (solidly in the bottom third), but vis-à-vis our local competition. And here’s where things get interesting: according to the results, while Hungary trails Poland (rank: 41) it not only beat Slovakia (62) but the Czech Republic (54). All of which, it might be pointed out, came out looking positively Danish (1) compared to just-next-door Ukraine (144).
That said, TI said Hungary continues to be “heavily” impacted by graft and other forms of corruption.
Meanwhile, note that the entire index is based on how locals see corruption – which is why it is officially called the “Corruption Perceptions Index” – meaning that maybe what seemed corrupt last year this year just seems normal.