According to a report by non-governmental organization Transparency International, Romania is amongst the most corrupt countries in the European Union with a total score of 44 out of 100, writes Cristian Gherasim.
Three states share for the first time the top place as the most corrupt country in the EU with Romania being joined by Bulgaria and Hungary, all with the same 44 points score.
The corruption perception index reflects how independent and business experts perceive corruption in 180 states and territories world wide. The ranking is made by awarding points, from 0 to 100, in which 0 means “very corrupt” and 100 “not corrupt at all”.
Transparency International corruption perception index raises awareness about the fact that corruption weakens the health system and contributes to the regression of democracy amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
The report draws a connection between a country’s ranking and its ability to face COVID-19. States with a good ranking invest more in the health care system, are more able to provide health care, and are less likely to violate democratic and institutional rules or the rule of law.
Corruption perception in Romania remains unchanged in comparison to 2019 with regards to health care and business environment. Same happened in Hungary whilst in Bulgaria has climbed up by one point.
What’s more surprising is that Romania records the same score as in 2012, which shows that the measures taken in almost 10 years have not been constant and have failed to change the perception that independent experts and the business environment have about corruption in Romania.
In Romania another cause for a worsening perception with regards to corruption is that public procurements are not being done in a transparent manner. That adds to the already underfinanced healthcare system. Also the lack of consistent measures to digitize administrative processes are constant national problems that have intensified in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic in Romania.
The Transparency International report underlines that the highest scorers in the European Union are Denmark (88) hitting the top spot, followed by Finland (85), Sweden (85) and Switzerland (85).
“Across the region, the COVID-19 pandemic has put additional and unexpected pressure on the integrity systems of many countries, making it a political crisis that threatens the future of liberal democracy. The pandemic has tested the limits of Europe’s emergency response, and in many cases, countries have fallen short of full transparency and accountability. In Norway (84), the government declared a state of emergency that challenged constitutional regulations,” writes the Transparency International Report.
The Corruption perception Index also emphasizes that throughout the EU constitutional states of emergency have made a significant dent in human rights across the continent. Also, due to COVID-19, elections have been delayed in at least 11 EU countries. The pandemic also affected rule of law in these countries and further weakened struggling democracies.