Corruption and bribery can be problems for every economy. But where in the world are unfair business practices rampant? A new report sheds light on the state of international corruption and examines which forms it takes.
Two out of five high-level managers worldwide think corruption is thriving in their home country, new figures revealed on Tuesday.
It seems especially rife in Brazil, where 90 percent of managers stated that bribery and corrupt methods were widespread in their country, followed by Ukraine (88 percent) and Thailand and Nigeria (86 percent).
At the other end of the spectrum, not a single Finnish manager thought corruption was common in Finland. In Germany, six percent of managers said corruption and bribery were a current problem.
The study by consultancy Ernst & Young (EY) was conducted among 2,825 executive board members and financial managers from 62 countries.
When the going gets tough
The study also asked interviewees about measures they were prepared to take, if their company was going through times of financial hardship.
A quarter of managers worldwide stated it was appropriate to offer entertainment to business partners to help their company over an economic downturn.
In China, where high-sum corruption cases might warrant a death penalty, every second manager would even resort to cash payments, when times are tough.
"In light of volatile markets and international crises, hard times are becoming the normality for many companies. It might be tempting to use unfair practices," said Dr. Stefan Heißner, who leads Fraud Investigation and Dispute Services at (EY).
"But bribery and corruption nearly always turn into a boomerang. Aside from that, it's just the wrong way forward: corruption often compensates for a lack of innovation."