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Is Australia becoming seen as a corrupt country?

How corrupt is Australia? Recently, Transparency International released the global 2022 Corruption Perceptions Index results which saw Australia scoring 75 points, ranking the country in 13th place. However, if you look at the historical trends, you will see that this ranking has fallen by six places since 2012.[1]

What about the sentiment on Australian corruption within our own borders? In 2018, Transparency International and Griffith University conducted a survey which found 85% of respondents perceive at least ‘some’ federal politicians as corrupt and trust and confidence in all levels of governments fell from the previous year, to 46% for federal and state levels, and 51% for local government nationally.[2] From the perspective of Australasian risk leaders, our 2020 Bribery and Corruption Survey found an average of 69% of respondents perceived bribery and/or corruption to be a risk to their organisation across the not for profit, private and public sectors.

How is Australia striving to be seen as leaders in integrity and transparency, when public trust in government is at an all-time low?

When we released our latest Bribery and Corruption Survey in 2020, we warned of a potential spike in bribery and corruption due to COVID-19. Since then, we have also had to face the effects of rising inflation rates, supply chain issues, ‘greenwashing’ and climate change costs, the war in Ukraine and other widespread global events. 

With a recent change in Government, we are also seeing an increase in transparency and accountability reforms now that these emerging issues have made it incredibly difficult for bribery and corruption to go unnoticed. The establishment of the National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC) could fill the gap in our integrity framework by providing an independent legislative mechanism to investigate and make findings of serious and systemic corruption. This means any individual or organisation who deals with the Federal Government will need to think about whether they are exposed to significant bribery and corruption risks and whether their Anti-bribery and corruption frameworks require strengthening and uplift.

A new corporate offence for failing to prevent foreign bribery and deferred prosecution agreement scheme have also been long-standing items in the Australian reform agenda. 

How have these disruptions and increased Government focus on transparency and accountability affected your organisation’s sentiment to bribery and corruption risk?

Through our 2023 Bribery and Corruption Survey, we aim to capture organisations’ views on the perceived impact of these emerging issues on their organisation’s bribery and corruption risks.

If you would like to express your interest in participating in this survey, please visit this link for further information. 

Check out our latest Bribery and Corruption Report which was released in 2020 here.

For any queries, please contact Deloitte Forensic - Bribery & Corruption.