The group’s board chairman, Jose Ugaz, cited Hungary and Turkey as examples. Their scores have worsened in recent years under leaders with authoritarian leanings, while Argentina, which ousted a populist government, has improved in the rankings, he said.
Based on expert opinions of public sector corruption, the annual report rated Denmark and New Zealand as the least-corrupt countries, followed by Finland, Sweden, Switzerland, and Norway. Somalia was ranked most corrupt, followed by South Sudan, North Korea, and Syria.
Rounding out the Top 10 least corrupt were Singapore, the Netherlands, Canada, and the tie-placing trio of Germany, Luxembourg and the United Kingdom in the No. 10 spot. The United States placed 18th, down from 16th in 2015.