2022 Corruption Perceptions Index

31st January 2023

2022 Corruption Perceptions Index

The release of global anti-corruption movement Transparency International’s (TI) 2022 Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) is a discouraging story, as South Africa slips one point in the rankings of the leading global index measuring perceptions of public sector corruption around the world.

South Africa has barely shifted position on the CPI over the 11 years that Corruption Watch, Transparency International’s local chapter, has been tracking its progress. Now ranked at 43, the country is back where it started in 2012, with very little upward movement over the past decade. It is important to note, however, that the CPI measures perceptions of corruption, and not actual corruption that is experienced in countries across the world. In this regard, perceptions may differ from the current reality in South Africa, where there has been some forward momentum by law enforcement agencies in curbing and combating corruption.

Using data from 13 external sources reflecting the views of country experts and surveys of businesspeople, the CPI ranks 180 countries and territories around the world based on perceptions of public sector corruption on a scale of zero (highly corrupt) to 100 (very clean). 

The global average remains unchanged at 43 for the 11th year in a row, indicating that more than two-thirds of countries score below 50 and thus have a serious problem with corruption, and most countries have made little to no progress in tackling corruption in more than 10 years.  

The 2022 report paints a disturbing picture of an increasingly dangerous world, highlighting the link between corruption and conflict globally, and the threat that corruption poses to peace and security. The recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic, the climate crisis, and growing security threats can be said to be at the root of a new wave of uncertainty and greater instability in the world in general. 

Report by Transparency International